Cyclone Gaja HIGHLIGHTS: After landfall, heavy rains pound Tamil Nadu coast, trees and houses uprooted
Cyclone Gaja lashed the coastal areas of Tamil Nadu and Puducherry in the wee hours of Friday. Heavy rains were accompanied by strong winds which uprooted trees and damaged roofs of houses. Here are the HIGHLIGHTS.
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Cyclone Gaja lashed the coastal areas of Tamil Nadu and Puducherry in the wee hours of Friday. Heavy rains were accompanied by strong winds which uprooted trees and damaged roofs of houses.
With the Tamil Nadu government already declaring that 30,500 rescue personnel were on standby, the district collectors of Thanjavur, Tiruvarur, Pudukottai, Nagapattinam, Cuddalore and Ramanathapuram have declared holiday for schools and colleges on Thursday.
Educational institutions in Puducherry and Karaikal regions are closed today and tomorrow in view of the cyclone.
Here are the highlights:
Visuals from Vedaranyam
Cyclone picks up speed again
After wind speed reduced for some time due to the eye of the cyclone touching shore, Cyclone Gaja has picked up speed again.
Tracking Gaja and the cyclone’s possible effects
Visuals from Nagapattinam
One hour for cyclone to fully cross from sea to land
The eye of cyclone Gaja is now making a landfall. It will take one hour for it to fully cross from sea to land. The intensity of the wind will be less when the eye of the cyclone falls on land and it will again increase gradually: Chennai MeT department tells ANI.
Cyclone Gaja makes landfall
Eye of cyclone touches shore. Wind speed has fallen. However, it would rise again in 15-30 minutes.
Visuals from Nagapattinam
Houses collapse, trees uprooted
Heavy rains accompanied by strong winds as outer edge of the cyclone reaches shore. Roofs of many thatched houses damaged in Vedaranyam. Trees uprooted in Nagapattinam town as cyclone nears shores between Karaikal and Vedaranyam.
Cyclone only 50 km away now
Eye of the cyclone is only 50 km northeast of Vedaranyam. It will take 2-3 hours to reach the shore.
Visuals from Cuddalore
Heavy rainfall in Vedaranyam
Heavy rainfall, along with strong winds, reported in Vedaranyam. Speed of wind is 100 to 120 kmph.
Cyclone only 80 km southeast of Karaikal
Gaja cyclone now lies at about 80 km southeast of Karaikal, moving at 16 kmph. It’s expected to cross through Vedaranyam and Nagapattinam between 12 am and 3 am. Within the next one hour, the eye of the cyclone is expected to touch land. Wind speed is 100-120 kmph: Balachandran, Chennai Met official tells ANI.
29,000 permanent cyclone shelters, says Tamil Nadu minister
There are 29,000 permanent cyclone shelters, 233 shelters made in schools, colleges and marriage halls. More than 5,000 people are present in these shelters, food is being provided to them: MC Sampath, Tamil Nadu minister tells ANI.
Fully prepared, says Tamil Nadu minister
The chief minister had instructed the district administration, so they are on alert at all places. There has not been a single incident. Cuddalore district has seen so many cyclones, so our preparation is very good: MC Sampath, Tamil Nadu minister tells ANI.
Visuals from relief camp in Nagapattinam
More visuals from Nagapattinam
Cyclonic storm reaches Nagapattinam tip
Cyclonic storm reaches Point Calimere in Kodiyakkarai in Nagapattinam district. Strong winds reach Vedaranyam.
Landfall speed expected to be around 100-110 kmph
No power in coastal hamlets.People have left for relief camps. Villages are looking like ghost towns. IMD says landfall speed would be around 100-110 kmph gusting to 120kmph.
Landfall expected by 12 in the midnight
Landfall will happen by 12 in the midnight, say IMD officials. Strong winds have started to blow in Kodiyakkarai of Nagapattinam.
Visuals of rainfall from Nagapattinam
Heavy rains start
Heavy rainfall starts in southern Nagapattinam district.
Current wind speed 90-100kms
The current wind speed of the cyclone is 90 to 100 kms, gusting to 110 kms: IMD
Cyclonic storm now 95 km away
The cyclonic storm is still 95 km away. Earlier, we had said that it will hit the coast between Pamban and Cuddalore, now we know it will hit somewhere south of Nagapattinam: Dr Mrityunjay Mohapatra, senior scientist, IMD.
Eye of the storm about 26 km wide
The eye of the storm is about 26 km wide, say IMD officials.
Cyclone now 125 km east of Puducherry coast
Cyclone now in Bay of Bengal about 125 km east of Karaikal in Puducherry. Post 10.30 pm, strong winds will blow in the coastal parts: IMD Chennai.
26,399 people evacuated
26,399 people have been evacuated and sent to 164 relief camps, say Tamil Nadu government officials.
14,445 people evacuated
14,445 people have been evacuated from Nagapattinam, Thanjavur, Pudukkottai, Thiruvarur and Cuddalore districts. They have been sent to 94 relief centres: Tamil Nadu government
Coast guards in action
Coast Guard Remote Operating Stations request fisheries authorities in Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh to account for all fishing boats.
Eight coast guard ships, two aircraft in action
Around eight Indian Coast Guard ships and two Dornier aircraft were pressed into action since November 9 for issuance of advisories and warnings in local languages to fishermen at sea for their safe return to ports, the defence ministry said.
Salt makers worried
Salt makers in Vedaranyam in Nagapattinam district say almost three lakh tonne salt worth Rs 21 crore would be destroyed if rainfall is more than 20 cm.
30,500 relief personnel deployed
Around 30,500 relief personnel, including eight teams each of NDRF and SDRF, policemen and civic volunteers, have been deployed for rescuing people.
Hundreds of rescue vehicles and ambulances ready
931 rescue vehicles and 400 ambulances kept ready in seven coastal districts, say officials.
Cyclone speed down
The speed at which the cyclone is hurtling towards the coast comes down to 10 kmph, say IMD Chennai officials. As of now, the cyclone is about 140km northeast to Nagapattinam.
Outer edge of cyclone close to shores
IMD Chennai officials say the outer edge of the cyclone has come close to the shores. They expect landfall in two hours.
Streets dark and deserted in Nagapattinam
Power shut in all seven coastal districts
Power has been shut down in all seven coastal districts. Shops were also kept closed. Bus operations are suspended.
Choppers carrying essentials rushed
Helicopters with food and materials rushed to Nagapattinam from Vishakapattinam.
Schools shut tomorrow
Schools declare holiday in Nagapattinam, Cuddalore, Ramanathapuram, Nagai, Pudukkottai, Thiruvarur and Thanjavur districts tomorrow.
Minister urges people to move to relief camps
As the cyclonic storm is coming close, revenue minister RB Udhayakumar appeals to Nagapattinam people to vacate their huts and urged them to move to relief camps.
Entry restricted into Marina, other major beaches
Entry restricted into Marina and other major beaches of Tamil Nadu and Puducherry. Sporadic rains continue in northern and central coasts of Tamil Nadu.
Three vessels sent to Cuddalore and Nagapattinam
Three vessels have been sent from Chennai to Cuddalore and Nagapattinam districts for rescue and rehabilitation operations.
NDRF teams on standby
Visuals of heavy rainfall from Cuddalore
Cyclone 290 km away
The cyclone is about 290 km northeast of Nagapattinam in Tamil Nadu
Towns deserted as people shift to relief camps
Power supply to be cut off in vulnerable districts
Power supply will be cut off in the evening in the districts that fall in the path of the cyclonic storm, Tamil Nadu electricity minister P Thangamani announced.
Minister reviews preparedness in fishing hamlet
Tamil Nadu handloom minister OS Manian reviews work at Aarkkattuthurai fishing hamlet near Vedaranyam of Nagapattinam district, where the cyclone is expected to cross shore.
People move to relief camps
Fishermen from Akkaraipettai, Keechankuppam, Nambiar Nagar, Aarkkattuthurai move to temporary relief camps.
Cyclonic storm Gaja picks pace
Cyclonic storm picks pace, moving at 25 km per hour and is 290 km away. It is moving towards Nagapattinam . In its Thursday bulletin, the IMD said the cyclone was moving at 14 km per hour.
Rain spells in Cuddalore, Puducherry
Rain spells start in Puducherry and Cuddalore, sea is also aggressive.
We are prepared, says district collector
As cyclone Gaja gathers strength in the Bay of Bengal, Ramanathapuram district collector Veera Raghava Rao says that they are fully equipped to deal with any situation.
Tourist spots off bounds
Tourism spots in Cuddalore, Nagapattinam are closed. Permissions has been denied for tourists to enter into Dhanuskodi point near Rameswaram.
Thousands evacuated from Nagapattinam
87,000 people have been evacuated from 34 villages in Nagapattinam district.