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At least 7 die in Chennai rains, the heaviest since the great floods of 2015

Chennai rains

CHENNAI, DECEMBER 4: The extremely heavy rain brought on by the approach of Cyclone Michaung has pounded Chennai and left it reeling. Weather bloggers suggested that the city received around 40 cm rainfall in 48 hours, numbers unseen since the great 2015 Chennai floods.
“Without the cut-off at 8.30 a.m., the rainfall would have been 300-plus mm (30 cm) in 24 hours, if we take event as whole for 24 hours and for 48 hrs it would be 400 mm (40 cm)”, Pradeep John, popular as Tamil Nadu weatherman on social media, said.
People were marooned, most roads were flooded and some caved in, trees were felled by furious winds, and cars and other vehicles were seen floating around. Many parts of the city were left without power as water gushed in uninvited and without respite.
Another body of an unidentified woman aged around 60 years was found at the Foreshore Estate bus depot.
Padmanaban (50), Dindigul district, died after getting electrocuted. His body was sent to the Rajiv Gandhi Government General Hospital in Chennai.
A fourth man, Ganesan (70), also was electrocuted while walking near his house in Pandiyan Nagar.
A fifth man, 37-year-old Manoharan from Adyar, was killed after a tree fell on him while riding pillion on a motorcyle.
Two others, guest workers, staying in a thatched hut in Kanathur near an under-construction building died after a wall collapsed in Kanathur.
December 5 to be a public holiday
The Government has announced that December 5 will also be a public holiday. It had earlier announced that December 4 will be a public holiday.
All educational institutions and Government offices will remain closed.
The State Government has also requested private establishments in 4 districts ~ Chennai, Thiruvallur, Kancheepuram and Chengalpattu ~ to allow their employees to work from home on December 5 Tuesday too as far as possible, due to heavy rains and its impact.
Chennai airport to be shut till 9 a.m. on Dec 5, first such shutdown since 2015 floods
The heavy rains, have forced Chennai Airport to close down its airfield from 9.17 a.m. to 9 a.m. on December 5, according to official sources. During 2015 in Chennai, the floods had forced the closure of the airport for at least 4 days.
Many passengers awaiting their flights were stranded for hours as flights could not take off due to gusty wind and rains and also since water from Adyar River had entered the runway.
Earlier, 5 flights departing from Chennai were canceled and 23 flights diverted. Two arrivals were also canceled, according to Chennai airport sources.
While many passengers left for home, others stayed back. Many aircrafts are still waiting at the tarmac to depart once the weather turns normal, airport sources said.
Food and other arrangements have been made for those staying back as part of the contingency plan.
Ground handlers have been advised to ensure mooring of aircraft and safety of ground support equipments and operating personnel.
In 2015, the Airport Authority of India had joined hands with the Indian Institute Technology to map the geography of the airport and its surrounding areas using a drone to plan a long-term solution to prevent flooding. It was then planned to map the airport and the surrounding water bodies up to 5-10 kilometers radius from the airport.
The Chennai Metropolitan Development Authority has informed the Madras High Court the study has been done but this is yet to be made public.
Heavy rain brings crocodile to Chennai road
Meanwhile, a viral video of mugger crocodile, which was spotted by passers-by near Velammal School along the Perungalathur-Nedungunram road on Sunday night, has sparked concern among the residents and Forest Department officials.
The crocodile was seen crossing the road near Perunguathur and entering the bushes.
Prasanth E, Wildlife Warden, Chennai told The New Indian Express that this is not the first time crocodiles have been spotted in the area.
Last year, two crocodiles have been spotted and they have been captured by the Forest Department. “We have given them the phone numbers to inform us if they sight any crocodiles”, said Prasanth.
Tamil Nadu’s Secretary for Environment, Climate Change and Forests Supriya tweeted urging people to not go near the reptile as they were shy creatures who avoid human contact.
“There are a few mugger crocodiles in several of the water bodies in Chennai. They are shy and elusive animals and avoid human contact. This one has come out as water has overflowed due to massive rains under the impact of Cyclone Michuang. Wildlife division has been alerted and they are on the job”, she said.
(Courtesy: TNIE)

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