MUMBAI: Torrential rains lashed India’s financial hub Mumbai for the second time in weeks on Tuesday, flooding low-lying areas and paralysing traffic at the country’s second busiest airport after a plane overshot the runway.
Low visibility, strong winds, and slippery conditions caused the SpiceJet flight to overshoot while landing on Tuesday night and skid onto the grass.
The airline said all 183 passengers on the flight from the northern city of Varanasi were safe, but the incident led to widespread disruptions.
India’s largest carrier Indigo and rivals Jet Airways and Vistara issued advisories saying they had halted all flights to and from Mumbai due to unavailability of runways and bad weather conditions.
The airport was earlier shut down for 30 minutes while the downpour hampered visibility.
A deluge in Mumbai last month killed 14 people, wrecked homes and caused chaos in the city of 20 million people.
Tuesday’s rain-delayed services on the heavily used local train network, a rail official said, while road traffic was heavily disrupted by flooding.
The state of Maharashtra’s Education Minister Vinod Tawde in a tweet advised all schools and colleges in the city to remain closed on Wednesday when the weather department forecasting that heavy rains would continue.
On Wednesday, NDTV reported that flight operations are still affected at Mumbai airport, with a total of 56 flights having been diverted as the main runway is yet to become operational.
The media outlet stated that Mumbai recorded 210mm rainfall and its suburb 303mm in the last 24 hours until 8:30 am today.
“The iconic ‘dabbawalas’ of Mumbai have canceled their delivery of over two lakh tiffins to office goers in the city. ‘The over 5,000 ‘dabbawalas’ who deliver around two lakh ‘dabbas’ (tiffins) a day won’t be able to do so today as they returned only this morning after being stranded at railway stations,’ Subhash Talekar, spokesperson of the Mumbai Dabbawala Association said,” NDTV reported.