New Delhi: A massive thunderstorm coupled with dusty winds hit the national capital Delhi on Friday severely affecting road traffic, metro services, flight operations and power supply in the city.
Met department termed the storm as “cumulonimbus” and attributed it to western disturbance over Pakistan. NCR areas of east Delhi, Noida and Ghaziabad were the most affected by the thunder storm.
Thousands of people were stranded outside Metro stations and on roads as traffic almost came to a stand still due the storm and high-speed dusty winds blowing at a speed of over 90 kmph.
“Metro train services were disrupted due to failure/erratic power supply from Delhi Transco Limited (DTL) to Delhi Metro’s receiving sub stations (RSS) across the network, which in turn feed power to Metro system for running the trains and stations,” said Anuj Dayal, DMRC Executive Director (Corporate Communications).
At some locations including Janakpuri and Inderlok material like tin sheet and pipes got entangled into the OHE (Overhead Electrification Wire) due to the dust storm, making train movement impossible.
Passengers were stranded at various metro stations and even asked to de-board the trains at various locations until normal power supply was resumed. The train services, however, resumed from 6 PM onward after resumption of power supply from DTL and clearance of all material from the OHE wire by DMRC engineers.
However, even after normal services were restored, it took a lot of time to clear the backlog of stranded passengers. Long queues were seen at metro stations. “I was waiting at Janakpuri metro station for more than an hour. Even after metro services were restored, I could not get into the first two trains as they were jam-packed.
The dust storm, which struck at 4:58 PM, caused technical snag in the over-head power network of the Noida City Centre- Dwarka metro line affecting metro services in other lines too. Met office said similar weather conditions are likely to persist for over the next two days. At least 12 flights were diverted due to the storm, an IGI official said.
The city saw massive traffic jams as the storm uprooted trees snapping power lines in many areas and affecting traffic lights leading to chaos on the streets. “The cumulonimbus brings tall thunderstorms and dusty winds with a speed of over 92 kmph and are caused because of western disturbance, which is currently over Pakistan.
“The meeting of cold air and hot air on the Indo-Gangetic plains causes low pressure area and also lot of instability. This results in severe thunderstorm,” IMD Director General L S Rathore said.
The storm affected northeast Haryana and the NCR. But parts of east Delhi, Noida and Ghaziabad were affected the most, he said. “This phenomena is likely to continue for the next two days,” Rathore said. The maximum temperature recorded today was 42.8 degree Celsius while the minimum was 29.1 degree.