IMD’s Doppler Radar dysfunctional: Hyd forecasts become doubtful

Telangana’s only ‘Doppler Radar’, which helps track of cloud movement, makes weather forecasts and records rainfall for the India Meteorological Department (IMD) Hyderabad observatory, has been dysfunctional for the third day in a row.

“We are repairing the radar, but cannot say how long it will take. Engineers from Delhi are trying to understand the issue related to the antenna, which has some difficulty for about a month, said IMD meteorologist Sridhar.

As a result, IMD is relying on satellite material and other tools, which are not very accurate, to forecast the weather in Hyderabad. “The problem was intensified when it stopped on Saturday. After that, we were not being able to foresee warnings, and therefore we have been dependent on IMD observatories in Chennai, Machilipatnam, and Visakhapatnam. The Visakhapatnam observatory also reportedly stopped working due to UPS problems,” the Met official said.

Our radar uses electromagnetic waves to detect the intensity of surface rainfall and precipitation accumulation amid other things, which help us in composing weather predictions for up to 500 km radius and effectively to up to 300 km,” said Sridhar. “The data we get from our radar is priceless,” he said, adding, “All other private weather forecast companies like ‘Skymet Weather’ and the ‘Weather Channel’ depend on our data of now-casting, that is weather forecasting on a very short term mesoscale period of up to 2 and 4 hours, which helps us in declaring real-time warnings for the city that now we are not being able to do.

The automatic weather stations of Telangana State Development and Planning Society (TSDPS) can be used to track real-time weather. However, foreseeing warnings is technically impossible. Meanwhile, without any warning, rain poured down its torrents in Hyderabad on Monday noon.

Between 8.30 am and 6.30 pm, western parts of the city recorded rainfall between 6 and 7 cm. The suburbs also recorded rain of about 5 cm. In Hyderabad, after a spell of even moderate 5 cm rain most of the suburbs got partially inundated, arterial roads were blocked and a few were shut down by the traffic police to avoid casualties.

Authored by Mohammed Hussain, Twitter: @writetohussain