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Sweating houses, dripping walls leave Odisha clueless

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Odisha Sun Times Bureau:
Bhubaneswar, Jan 3:

Smoky window shields, dripping walls and soggy floors: people across Odisha were left clueless about the damp conditions prevailing in their homes, offices and other places yesterday.

sweating on walls

As walls and floors at homes – in shanties as well as high rise apartments – oozed profusely and mirrors on the wall got foggy despite repeated scrubbing, people were at their wit’s end trying to fathom what the phenomenon was all about since they had never experienced anything like it before.

Some feared these conditions might affect the electrical circuits eventually leading to short circuit and mishap. Bharati, a housewife in the Pokhariput area of the capital city hurriedly switched off all electrical appliances, including the TV, while her friend Sanjukta frantically called her husband, who was away, to rush back home.

 

Coming as it did barely a day after 2014 was over, those who believe in stars thought the New Year had brought bad omen to them.

Rationalists, however, held their breath and consulted architects and engineers to find out why this situation had arisen. Was it due to faulty design, architectural faultlines or any reason beyond their apprehension?

But it was left to the weathermento offer an explanation for the bizarre phenomenon.

“When dew point temperature almost equals the atmospheric temperature, condensation takes place as water vapours condense in the surface atmosphere,” said Bhubaneswar IMD Director, Sarat Chandra Sahu.

This condition was the result of the fact that the moisture could not disperse into the atmosphere. Besides, the moisture content in the atmosphere had reached saturation point beyond which evaporation could not take place. Therefore, the buildings were dripping and sweating in some parts of the state, Sahu explained.

Experts said the humidity level in Odisha capital was touching 100 per cent, which led to excess moisture in the atmosphere. This apart, spells of showers and sunny conditions would have helped vapourise the moisture. However, there was neither any downpour nor bright and clear skies which made the situation worse.

The temperature difference between the inside of houses and outside led to the condensation, experts reasoned.

While the weather forecast says the conditions would improve by January 4, showers may lash coastal and southern Odisha on January 8-9.