Risk from heavy rainfall refuses to subside over parts of flood and landslides-hit North-West India with the India Meteorological Department (IMD) predicting light to moderate fairly widespread to widespread rainfall with isolated heavy to very heavy rain over Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh during next two days and isolated heavy rain thereafter.

Isolated heavy rainfall is also likely over East Rajasthan during from Thursday to Sunday and over Himachal Pradesh on Saturday and Sunday. 

Vulnerable topography

Uttarakhand has already experienced intense rainfall, according to global GIS consulting company RMSI that provides geospatial technology solutions, modelling and analytics. Its topography is extremely prone to landslides because it is majorly a hilly terrain. With a severe rainfall alert valid for next five days, there is a strong potential for several landslides across the State. So far this month, landslides have already claimed six lives in the State, RMSI notes in an assessment shared with businessline.

Landslide risk scenario

Attached figure depicts the probable landslide scenario for Thursday. On Wednesday, a ‘very High’ probability was forecast in the districts of Almora and Nainital, while on Thursday, the risk is reduced in Almora though Nainital continues to be at ‘high risk.’ Certain parts of Garhwal, Tehri Garhwal, and Champawat are also in the ‘very high’ risk zone. As per the modelled forecast, around 10-15 per cent of road network in Uttarakhand was potentially at risk on Wednesday and Thursday, RMSI assessed. 

Road length at probable landslide risk in Uttarakhand on Thursday.

Road length at probable landslide risk in Uttarakhand on Thursday. | Photo Credit: RMSI

Kumaon region

Champawat and Nainital districts will likely receive significantly high rain in the Kumaon region. A few locations in Champawat, particularly in the central and southern parts and those adjoining Nainital, are at ‘high’ levels of landslide risk. Some areas to look out for are the Champawat district headquarters, Maywati, Dudori, Shukhi Dhang, Bhanuli, the NH stretch connecting Champawat to Tamli, and from Dhanaulti to Champawat via Khashu. Roads around Nani Lake, NH connecting Jeolikote to Bhowali and Nainital to Kala Dhungi, and road sections in the Retha Sahib of Nainital are also at ‘very high’ risk.

Garhwal region:

In the Garhwal region, districts of Garhwal, Tehri Garhwal, and adjoining parts of Chamoli will likely receive heavy rain in the next few days. Some areas to look out for in Garhwal are Pauri, Devprayag, Lansdowne, Dugadda, and Sinala. In Tehri Garhwal, Devprayag, the Tehri Garhwal district headquarters, Srinagar, and the NH stretch connecting Tehri Garhwal to Gangotri via Uttarkashi are at ‘high’ risk. Out of more than 68,000 km of road network in Uttarakhand, RMSI’s landslide hazard model has flagged 5,500 km under various levels of risk.