Extreme Weather: The present situation and the future (Video)

Extreme Weather: The present situation and the future (Video)

Written by Lahiru Fernando

16 May, 2016 | 9:50 pm

The rains which have persisted for two days is expected to gradually recede in certain parts of the Island: says the Department of Meteorology.

However the department also says the rains accompanied by strong winds could be experienced for a few more days.

Rainfall as of 8.30 this morning is as follows:

Katunayake – 260.2mm

Colombo – 232.4mm

Ratmalana – 170.8mm

Ratnapura – 131.1mm

Floods were reported from 8 districts in the country as a result of the incessant rains, affecting 7880 families. According to the Disaster Management Centre, 12,000 people have been relocated to safer areas.

Nearly 1000 houses in Wattala have been affected as a result of the Hamilton Canal overflowing.

CASUALTIES

Six deaths have been reported so far from across the island owing to the heavy rains.

> An infant drowned in Awarakotuwa, Wattala.

According to reports the 10 month old infant was asleep when he had fallen off his bed (which was supported by cement blocks) and drowned in the rain water which had inundated the house.

> Two killed in a landslide in Dehiowita

Bodies of two persons who were killed in a landslide in the Dehiowita area were found on Monday (May 16).

Police say that search operations are still underway to locate the body of another woman.

> Earth embankment kills one in Ratnapura

One person was killed in Ratnapura when an earth embankment collapsed onto a house in the Madagammana village, Eheliyagoda.

The victim was a 44 year old father of one.

According to the locals in the area, only the victim was inside the house when the incident occurred on Sunday (May 15) night.

Meanwhile a boat capsized in the Negombo seas on Monday morning owing to the bad weather.

Two fishermen aboard the capsized fishing vessel were rescued by the Sri Lanka Air Force.

According to the Air Force Media Spokesperson Wing Commander Chandima de Alwis, the two fishermen were taken to the Katunayake Air Force Base and then later were handed over to their relatives.

Parliament at risk…

Among the weather affected was the House of Legislation. The access road for public representatives to enter the Parliament complex appeared to have merged with the Diyawanna Oya.

A little too late for saving?

The fish which were to be on sale at the Central Fish Market Complex in Peliyagoda were seen floating in the flood waters which transformed the complex into a lake.

The Colombo Situation…

In spite of the sheets of rain and strong winds, vehicular movement in the Colombo city and surrounding areas seemed to be mostly normal.

Though several parts of Colombo Fort, Colpetty and Maradana areas were inundated, the effect on the flow of traffic was minimal.

Among the weather affected roads were Polgasowita along the 120 bus route from Colombo to Horana.

Meanwhile the Leslie Ranagala Mawatha in Borella resembled a lake.

Even the bottom floors of luxury apartment complexes in Rajagiriya fell victim to the floods.

Trees were uprooted in several parts of Colombo but were quickly cleared by police with the assistance of area residents.

Humanity prevails in Poranu Kotuwa

Poranu Kotuwa in Peheliyagoda, consists of about 200 small homes.

The residents of Poranu Kotuwa who were deprived of healthy and independent lives in normal weather conditions, are facing a truly hopeless future.

When News 1st visited the area to inquire into the situation faced by the people there, we were met with tales of woe.

The heavy rains may have washed away most of their belongings. But their humanity braved the storm, Sharing what little they have with their neighbours.

The people here continue to wonder when the authorities will turn their eyes towards places like Poranu Kotuwa.

Meanwhile more threats of landslides have emerged, this time in the Wattegama, Nawa-yaala-thenna, Bahirawakanda and Hantana areas in the Kandy District.

The North

The Northern Province, too, was affected by the heavy downpour.

The inundated areas of the North included;

The Low lying areas in Mannar and Musali

Multiple areas of the Kilinochchi District including Murukandi and Selvapuram.

Several low lying areas in the Mullaitivu District including Mullaiwaikkal, Bandarawanni and the Ottu-Chuttan areas.

The weather forecast over the next 24 hours

According to the Met department, that the tropical low pressure system currently, directly above the island, is slowly moving Northwards, and away from Sri Lanka towards India.

The department says that this will reduce the rainy conditions over the island, but warns that strong windy conditions will continue for a few more days.

The Met Department predicts heavy to very heavy falls, between 100-150 mm, in many areas across the island, mainly in the Northern, North Central, North Western provinces and in the South Western parts of the country.

Warnings have been issued to the Naval and Fishing communities to not engage in their activities over the next few days owing to the strong winds that will blow across coastal areas.

WATER LEVELS

The Water levels of several main rivers including the Mahaweli and Kelani rivers are rising rapidly. Low lying areas along the banks of the rivers are at risk of flooding as a result.

The water level of the Kelani River read at 5.4 inches on Monday morning. However later in the evening, the levels rose up-to 6.2 inches.

Several homes in low lying areas of the Kelani River are already underwater while those residing in these low lying areas of the Kelani River were evacuated on Monday evening.

The Kalu Ganga has already begun to overflow while the water levels of the Nilwala River is on the rise.

The Department of Irrigation reported that the Mahaweli River is at the verge of spill level from the Peradeniya area.

Meanwhile, 4 sluice gates of the Mahaweli Reservoir in Polgolla have been opened.

The Yan Oya is at spill level while the Maha Oya and the Aththanagalu Oya have begun overflowing.

As there is a rapid rise in water levels of the Kalu Ganga, those living on the banks of the river have been urged to maintain caution.

The water levels of the Malwathu Oya in Anuradhapura has risen causing the road leading up to the sacred grounds from the Anuradhapura Railway Station and several areas in its surrounding to flood.

The opened Sluice Gates

7 sluice gates of the Deduru Oya.

3 sluice gates of the Wimalasurendra Reservoir.

All 20 sluice gates of the Thabbowa Tank in Puttalam

Reports indicate that all tanks in Polonnaruwa have reached spill level.

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