The return of heavy rains to Mumbai and adjoining areas on Monday morning have brought more pain to residents already battling water-logging and flooding. According to PTI reports, railway and airport operations have also been affected by the heavy downpour, bringing India’s financial capital to a grinding halt. The conditions are expected to get worse over the next two days with the Regional Meteorological Centre predicting “intermittent rain with heavy to very heavy falls” likely in city and suburbs for the next 48 hours. The deluge has drawn a barrage of criticism for the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) even as authorities try to control the escalating situation.
BMC took to Twitter to express regret over the prevailing conditions. “Dear Mumbaikars, the city has experienced heavy rainfall in the last couple of hours, especially in the eastern suburbs. We regret all the inconvenience that has showered along. But the intensity is on decline now & our teams will try to pump out logged water as soon as possible,” it said.
With the threat of urban flooding rising all over the country, National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) has shared a set of guidelines to minimize the negative effects and ensure the safety of the citizens.
Here are some do’s and don’ts you must follow during floods and water-logging:
Before the flood
1. Keep your phone charged at all times and use mass media to keep yourself updated about the weather conditions.
2. For the safety of domesticated/pet animals do not tie them up.
3. Prepare an emergency kit consisting of essential items for your safety. Make sure that the first aid kit consists of medicine for snakebite and diarrhea.
4. Keep your important documents and other expensive items in waterproof packets.
After the flood
1. Don’t allow children to enter the floodwater and don’t eat food contaminated by floodwater in any way.
2. Don’t use damaged electronics and maintain caution in relation to damaged electricity wires, sharp objects, and debris.
3. Use mosquito net to protect yourself against malaria
4. Don’t use washroom or tap water in case of broken water pipelines/sewers.
During the flood
1. Avoid going out and driving. Wear appropriate footwear in case of unavoidable circumstances.
2. Stay away from sewer lines, manholes, culverts, and broken electricity poles and wires.
3. Eat fresh and dry food. Drink boiled water or water treated with chlorine.
4. Use disinfectants to keep your surroundings clean.
In case the house has to be evacuated
1. Keep all the furniture and appliances on the bed and table. Keep a sandbag in the toilet bowl to make sure the sewer water does not re-enter the house.
2. Turn off electricity and gas connections.
3. Before stepping outside check the water level using a stick.
4. Return to your house only after an appeal by the local authorities
Avoiding rumors and remaining calm also remains key to the situation, the guidelines state. With the Southwest monsoon finally ready to reach the entire country, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) has predicted heavy to very heavy rainfalls at various places including Konkan coast and Goa in the coming week.