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Flood threat in Andhra Pradesh, Odisha after cyclone Titli leaves rivers, streams in full spate

Andhra Pradesh chief minister Chandrababu Naidu, camping at Srikakulam, is scheduled to take up an aerial survey on Friday to take stock of the cyclone-affected areas.

india Updated: Oct 12, 2018 12:39 IST
Debabrata Mohanty and Gali Nagaraja
Debabrata Mohanty and Gali Nagaraja
Hindustan Times, Bhubaneswar/Vijayawada
Cyclone Titli,Flood alert in Andhra Pradesh,Flood alert in Odisha
A group of people relocating to safer places after Cyclone Titli hits Barua village, in Srikakulam, on Oct 11, 2018. (PTI)

Andhra Pradesh and Odisha stared at a possible flood situation on Friday, a day after Cyclone Titli hit their coasts, with rivers and streams flowing in spate following heavy rains in several districts of the two states.

At least 12 people were killed on Thursday in both states, officials said, as Cyclone Titli made a landfall early on Thursday morning, disrupting road and telecommunications networks and power and water supply.

Ganjam district of Odisha was the worst affected and Srikakulam district in Andhra Pradesh was also hit hard by the cyclone that dumped heavy rains in the coastal areas of the states.

Odisha’s special relief commissioner Bishnupada Sethi said G Udaygiri of Kandhamal district recorded the maximum rainfall of 351 mm under the impact of Cyclonic storm Titli that is now stationed over Kandhamal-Angul districts. By Friday night, the system was expected to gradually move north-eastwards to West Bengal.

Rail traffic was badly affected as a tree fell on the tracks between Ambadala and Dahikhala in Rayagada district. Three long-distance trains – Santragachi-Chennai Express, Gandhidham Express and Tirupati-Bilaspur Express – were halted at different stations of Rayagada.

As many as 16 rural water supply schemes were damaged, affecting the supply of drinking water to several villages in Andhra Pradesh. Restoration works are expected to begin on Friday.

Power supply infrastructure also reported heavy damages, leading to the disruption of supply in 4,319 villages and six municipal towns in Srikakulam district. Telecommunication network was damaged due to heavy gales at 112 sites in the district.

Flooding

Though high winds of Titli did not do much damage in Ganjam, the resultant rains led to flooding in Bhanjanagar block of the district.

Rivers Rushikulya and Vansadhara are flowing above the danger level at three places in Ganjam, Gajapati and Rayagada since Thursday evening while in Balasore, river Jalaka continued to flow six metres above the danger level due to the incessant rain.

The water was flowing five-feet above Atharnala bridge cutting communication to as many as eight panchayats of Mohana block of Gajapati, which recorded 315mm of rain, the highest in Odisha since Thursday.

The rising water level of the Vamsadhara, which also passes through Andhra Pradesh, has turned the situation grim in the southern state as well.

A third level warning was issued on Thursday at 5pm at Gotta Barrage with inflows in the Vamsadhara recorded at 1,23,042 cusecs, a bulletin of Andhra Pradesh State Disaster Management Authority (APSDMA) said.

Flood situation prevailed in Kothuru, Heera and Jalamuru mandals of Srikakulam downstream. Low lying areas such as Palasa and Vajrapu Kothuru also remained water-logged with sea waters. Heeramandalam in Srikakulam district received the highest rainfall of 153mm.

Srikakulam collector K Dhananjaya Reddy told reporters that the district administration is prepared to undertake evacuation measures in vulnerable areas depending on the gravity of the situation. He said the administration is also focusing on sanitation and public health in cyclone-hit areas.

Andhra Pradesh chief minister Chandrababu Naidu, camping at Srikakulam, is scheduled to take up an aerial survey on Friday in an attempt to take stock of the cyclone-affected areas. He announced an ex-gratia to the families of eight people, who died during the cyclone on Thursday.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi called up Naidu and inquired about the conditions of cyclone-hit north coastal Andhra region. The state government is expected to seek central assistance after coming to grips with the losses.

Deaths, missing people

Six fishermen were swept away at sea and another two people died in Andhra Pradesh’s Sarigujjula mandal of Srikakulam district as Cyclone Titli hit the coast.

The first report of a casualty from Odisha has come from Ganjam district where a minor girl died when the uprooted tree fell on her house leading to the collapse of a portion of its wall.

Sources said Rajeswari Naik, a student of Class 8 in K Nuagaon area of Chikiti block, died instantly while her parents sustained injuries. However, special relief commissioner Bishnupada Sethi said the report was being verified.

In another incident in Ganjam, the body of one of the one people who was swept away from their home in Gajalbadi panchayat was recovered on Friday a few metres away from his house.

Six people of a family went missing on Thursday after their house was swept away by flood waters of Adangi river at Bhutapankal village. Similarly, in two separate incidents, two men were killed after being swept away by flood waters in Nayagarh district.

In another storm-related incident, a couple and their teenaged son sustained critical injuries Cuttack district after a portion of a hill collapsed on their house on Thursday night. Kuna Swain, 35, Ranjana Swain, 30, and Litu Swain, 17, of Bishnupur village under Tigiria police station were sleeping when a landslide caused the wall collapse.

Fire department officials and locals rushed to the spot and admitted them to a hospital nearby.

The regional Met department has issued thunderstorm and lightning alert for Khurda, Cuttack, Mayurbhanj, Balasore, Keonjhar, Dhenkanal, Angul, Sambalpur, Jajpur, Bhadrak, Jagatsinghpur, Kendrapara, Kandhamal, Sundergarh and Deogarh districts in Odisha.

First Published: Oct 12, 2018 11:43 IST