Sri Lanka has seen heavy rainfall from around 10 May 2021. As of 13 May, Disaster Management Centre (DMC) reported floods and rainfall damages in the districts of Rathnapura, Colombo and Puttalam, affecting around 1,000 people and displacing 175. Lightning and strong winds also caused damage during the period 11 to 13 May 2021.
DMC said that flooding damaged 3 houses and affected around 10 people in Rathnapura from 11 to 12 May. In Colombo, 175 people were displaced by flooding on 13 May. In Puttalam District, flooding affected 485 people in Chillaw division and 266 in Arachchikattuwa on 12 May.
Acording to Sri Lanka’s Department of Meteorology as much as 229 mm of rain fell in 24 hours to 12 May in Beralapanathara. In an 8 hour period on 13 May 2021, several areas recorded more than 140 mm of rain. Hiniduma in Galle recorded 190 mm of rain and Horana in Kaluthara 160 mm during this period.
The heavy rain is a result of a low pressure area developed in the southeastern Arabian Sea. The Department of Meteorology warned on 13 May that “prevailing showery condition in the Southwestern parts of the country (particularly in Southern, Western, Sabaragamuwa, North Central and Central provinces) is expected to continue further. Very heavy falls above 200 mm will occur at some places tonight.”
File photo: Previous floods in Sri Lanka. Photo: Sri Lanka Red Cross Society