An unrelenting downpour has battered low-lying parts of the city since the early hours of Tuesday, with some areas receiving almost 12 inches of rain. Weather forecasts suggested that the rain will continue over the next 48 hours before it begins to decrease.
Vehicles gingerly made their way through waterlogged roadways as residents sloshed through flooded streets — navigating waist-high water in some areas — after being sent home early from offices and schools.
The Indian Navy has put flood rescue teams on standby at multiple locations across Mumbai in anticipation of worsening conditions.
Thousands of commuters faced difficult journeys home with the heavy monsoon rains leaving some stranded or facing delays at train stations. So far, no casualties have been reported.
In the Parel neighborhood of Mumbai, Piyush Jain posted a video on Twitter showing inflatable dinghies being used to ferry people across stricken roads.
“There are around 25 locations where there’s intense waterlogging and they’ve had to divert traffic,” Devendra Fadnavis, chief minister of Maharashtra state told reporters. “We’re advising offices to give their employees the rest of the day off and leave as soon as they can.”
“It has been raining so heavily that water from manholes is spilling onto the roads,” local resident Aman Patel told Reuters. “It seems as if no measures have been taken. It has been raining so heavily that people are having a tough time.”
Local media reported that the downpour could become the worst in Mumbai since 2005, when hundreds were killed after the city received 39 inches of rain in 24 hours, according to the Regional Meteorological Centre.
But officials downplayed the comparison. Rajiv Nivatkar, director of the Disaster Management Unit in Mumbai, told CNN: “It is not a flood-like situation because no one needs to be rescued.”