Wednesday, August 2, 2023

Highly localized, extreme rainfall in Kalimpong :01Aug2023

With a deep depression in the north Bay, 01Aug2023 started off in North Bengal and Kalimpong as a warm, dry day and remained so most of the day. There was little indication of the severe weather which was looming in the evening and IMD had issued only a YELLOW warning for our region.
The first patches of cumulonimbus clouds appeared in the satellite image at 5.45pm.

Thundershowers started around 6.30pm and continued nonstop till 11.30pm. Rainfall intensities remained high as can be seen from the graph.
What was very surprising was that the rainfall was very localized with the precipitation only occurring in Kalimpong. Other towns in the vicinity had the normal expected rain - only Jhalong and Rongo in the far east of Kalimpong district showed the extreme rain as was experienced in Kalimpong.
Even though landslides did occur, their prevalence was not high - perhaps because of the meagre rainfall received in north Bengal in the latter half of Jul2023 and the consequent decrease in the moisture content of the soil.

Praful Rao
Kalimpong district
Darjeeling Sikkim Himalaya

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