Historic May rainfall in H.P driven by six western disturbances
Shimla, May 31
This month ending today is the wettest since 2004 as six back to back active western disturbances affected the State of HP resulting in scattered to fairly widespread rain or snow causing widespread destruction to agriculture crop. Also cumulative, the spring-summer season from March to May this year recorded an excessive amount of rainfall, with a 19 percent increase compared to normal.
In May 2023, the cumulative rainfall was 116.8 mm, which was 84 percent above normal (compared to the normal average of 63.3 mm). In April, there was 103 mm of rain, 62 percent above normal (compared to the normal average of 64 mm). However, in March, there was only 66.8 mm of rain, which was 41 percent below normal (compared to the normal average of 113.4 mm).
May saw the occurrence of six Western Disturbances (WDs), making it the wettest month with an 84 percent excess rainfall in Himachal Pradesh. The scattered to fairly widespread rain or snowfall during the month caused significant damage to agricultural crops.
Out of the twelve districts, ten experienced large excess rainfall in May. Sirmaur had 168 mm of rain, 295 percent above normal. Solan received 175.5 mm of rain, 256 percent above normal. Kangra had 133 mm of rain, 141 percent above normal. Shimla received 139 mm of rain, 95 percent above normal. Kullu had 158.5 mm of rain, 128 percent above normal. Una received 74.3 mm of rain, 129 percent above normal. Bilaspur received 93.7 mm of rain, 139 percent above normal. Chamba recorded 166 mm of rain, 69 percent above normal. However, the tribal district of Kinnaur had 55.9 mm of rain, which was 3 percent below normal, and Lahaul Spiti had 76 mm of rain, 28 percent below normal.
In May 2023, the state recorded the highest cumulative rainfall since 2004, with 116.8 mm (84 percent above normal). Previous to this, Himachal Pradesh experienced a 28 percent excess rainfall in May 2010, with 78.9 mm of rain, and a 5 percent excess rainfall in May 2016, with 70.2 mm of rain. For the rest of the year in the past nine years, the state received deficient rainfall. In May 2004, the state recorded 63 percent deficient rainfall.
Also in the three months period, the State of Himachal Pradesh received 286.9 mm of rain during these three months, compared to the normal average of 240.7 mm. Pertinent to mention here that this data is subject to change as record for the day of writing this report is not added yet.
As per data, from March 1 to May 30, Sirmaur district, recorded a cumulative rainfall of 342.4 mm, which was 172 percent above normal. Bilaspur received 258.5 mm of rain, 119 percent above normal. Solan recorded 253.1 mm of rain, 145 percent above normal. Shimla received 372.3 mm of rain, 81 percent above normal. Kullu had a large excess of 158.5 mm, with 128 mm of rainfall. Kangra received 314 mm of rain, 66 percent above normal. Mandi recorded 343.3 mm of rain, 79 percent above normal. Una received 154.5 mm of rain, 50 percent above normal. Hamirpur had 201 mm of rain, 55 percent above normal. Kinnaur district experienced 188.9 mm of rain, which was 24 percent below normal, and Chamba had 411 mm of rain, which was 11 percent below normal.
According to the Met Office, the highest seasonal rainfall in the pre-monsoon period was recorded in 2015, with 318 mm of rain, 30 percent above normal.
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