Tsunami-like storm floods Budapest

August 17, 2015

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After a week of extremely hot, dry weather, torrential storms pummeled Budapest on Sunday and Monday night, blowing tiles off roofs and unleashing a huge amount of rainfall over the Hungarian capital.

An unprecedented 83.3 liters per sqm (83.3 mm) fell on the Hungarian capital between 6:40 pm and 7:40 pm, turning squares into lakes, streets into streams, and cellars into indoor swimming pools.  To the west of the river Danube, roads servicing the hills of Buda turned into raging rivers.

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Between 7:40 pm and 8:40 pm the city received another 7 mm with expectations for another 10 to 30 mm over the course of the night.

Hundreds of people found themselves stranded at bus and tram stops in ankle-deep water as public transportation ground to a halt.   As flood waters reached 30 cm in some parts of the city, even taxis dared not venture out into the storm.

The unprecedented volume of water–roughly equal to one and a half month’s average rainfall in August–caused sewers to overflow and cellars to flood, inundating transformers and depriving parts of Budapest of electricity.

Meteorologist Zoltán Üveges told index.hu that he could not recall such intensive rain.