Monsoon rains pounded India starting in late May 2006, earlier than the normal June start date. By July 10, the floods associated with the annual rains had spread over most of the country, killing more than 250 people, Reuters reported. The impact of monsoon rains on eastern India’s Orissa state is clear in this pair of false-color images. The Mahanadi River was swollen with the first heavy rain of the summer on July 6, when the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Terra satellite captured the top image. On June 14, lower image, the river was a thin blue line winding through the wide tan ribbon of the flood plain. Mud from run-off and floods makes the water a lighter shade of blue in the flood image. In addition to flooding the river, water darkens the surrounding wetlands, which form a fine filigree of channels branching out from the river. Clouds are pale blue and white. A fire is outlined in red in the lower image.
The MODIS Rapid Response System provides daily images of eastern India.
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This image originally appeared on the Earth Observatory. Click here to view the full, original record.