Thursday, 24 January, 2019

Kerala rains: 26 dead, thousands evacuated amid India flooding

Kerala rains: 26 dead, thousands evacuated amid India flooding Kerala rains: 26 dead, thousands evacuated amid India flooding
Melinda Barton | 11 August, 2018, 07:05

Experts said the perigean spring tides from August 11 to 15 could lead to flooding all along the Kerala coast, worsening the situation in low- lying areas such as Kuttanad. For the second consecutive day, there was nearly four times the normal rainfall (377 per cent) in the state.

State Disaster Control Room sources said 26 people have died in rain-related incidents since yesterday with 17 of them being killed in landslides in Idukki and Malapuram districts.

One column of Army from Pangode Military Station under the leadership of a Captain carried out the relief operations in Adimali area in Idukki district. Wayanad received the maximum total rainfall of 170.9 mm.

Father Abhilash Chirambikkunnel, an official of Thamaraserry Diocese, said officials were providing schools and other church institutions to accommodate people in Kozhikode and Wayanad districts.

The Indian Navy has put on alert its Southern Naval Command in view of the rising water level in the Periyar river and a possible inundation of parts of Wellingdon Island surrounded by the backwaters of Kochi. The river is now in full spate.

According to the Economic Times, the water level in various dams of the state is going way over the danger mark, after which shutters of at least 24 reservoirs in Kerala have been opened to drain out excess water. According to the government reports, more than 10, 000 has been moved to the 157 relief camps across the state.

Unprecedented rainfall in the past 24 hours in Kerala has taken 22 lives.

A 47-year-old man drawing water was killed when the well caved in due to heavy rain at Palavila near Pirappancode on Friday morning. Five columns of Army has been deployed in the state's northern districts since last night, and small bridges have been constructed to evacuate people stranded at various places in Kozhikode and Wayanad. Two more shutters of the Cheruthoni dam, part of the Idukki reservoir, the biggest arch dam in Asia, were lifted around 7 am on Friday. "The increase in water level downstream due to this limited discharge is estimated to be contained within the river banks", the Kerala State Disaster Management Authority (KSDMA) said in a press release.

Top elected state official Pinarayi Vijayan says the flood situation has become "very grim" with the opening of sluice gates of almost two dozen overflowing water reservoirs.

Read Also: Kerala: No respite from rain havoc; at least 16 dead in landslides and flash floods Owing to the weather conditions, the Cochin International Airport has closed arrival operations from 1.10 pm on Thursday after the third shutter of the Idukki dam opened at 12.30 pm on Thursday. The KSDMA has issued an alert in the nearby areas and has asked people not to panic.