A tree in Motinagar got uprooted and fell on a car damaging the vehicle. The city witnessed heavy rains over the past few days. (Photo: Gandhi)
Hyderabad: The rains in September have played havoc with people’s lives and city transport systems, uprooting more than 20 trees and damaging power lines as large tree branches fell on them as well as on cars.
Trees are a major casualty during the monsoon months for a number of reasons. In the case of the most recent incident on October 1, a tree on Road no 22 in Jubilee Hills was uprooted because of the heavily cemented pavement that surrounded it.
It is usually in the pre-monsoon season of May, when there are gusty wind movements, that trees are uprooted. But in September this year it was not the wind but the continuous rain that led to such incidents.
Incessant rains, cemented pavements that do not allow the roots any breathing space, and also the imbalance of the crown due to lack of proper pruning, are some of the common causes for trees and large branches to fall.
The continuous water flow from high ground to lower level also damages the roots of trees in the path of the rain water. On September 24, when it rained heavily at night, tree fall complaints came in from Basheerbaugh, Masab Tank, ECIL and Malkajgiri areas.
There were complaints for the next two days from low-lying areas in Nacharam and Begumpet that were inundated.
Kushboo Praveen, who lives in Jubilee Hills, said, "Trees on the pavements are mercilessly chopped by the electricity department every year. They leave a badly tilted branch on the road which expands and sadly this rain has seen them give away. We have had so much work done on the roads in Jubilee Hills that only those trees that are in apartment compounds and independent homes are safe."
Pictures of heavily cemented pavements along roads in Hi-tech city, Miyapur, Yusufguda and other places have been posted to the GHMC on social media, asking the civic body not to kill fully grown trees. While they may have been saved for now, there is a growing concern that there must be better management of fully-grown trees.
Viswajit Kampati, director of Enforcement, Vigilance and Disaster Management of the GHMC says, "Usually September is not the month when trees fall. It has been an unusual event this year and it is because of a lot of rain within a short period of time."