Wednesday, 20 February, 2019

Odisha gears up to face cyclone Titli

Strong winds and heavy rain pounds Brahmapur in Odisha state Strong winds and heavy rain pounds Brahmapur in Odisha state
Melinda Barton | 12 October, 2018, 06:45

As the landfall process started, at least five districts like Ganjam, Gajapati, Puri, Khurda and Jagatsinghpur are receiving good amount of rainfall coupled with high speed winds under the impact of Titli.

Titli made landfall between the Odisha and Andhra Pradesh coast early Thursday morning, disrupting road and telecommunications networks and power supply in most parts of Ganjam and Gajapati districts.

There were reports from Odisha's districts of Ganjam and Gajapati of trees being uprooted along with electricity and communication poles, news agency dpa said.

Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik reviewed the situation and administrative measures to face aftermath of Titli, at State secretariat in Bhubaneswar on Thursday.

Casualties were low as administrations in both states had evacuated thousands of people from the low-lying coastal areas bordering the Bay of Bengal.

Horticulture crops suffered extensive damage in Srikakulam district while paddy suffered damage in Vizianagaram.

According to data with the Andhra Pradesh State Disaster Management Authority (APSDMA), 3,000 hectares of paddy, 29 hectares of banana crops and 9,000 hectares of vegetable crops were damaged across two mandals in Srikakulam, Jalumuru, Polaki.

The system is now moving northeastwards towards Gangetic West Bengal across Odisha and it will weaken gradually, it said.

Titli, which means butterfly in Hindi, has been categorised as a very severe cyclonic storm.

Those evacuated were being kept in special shelters and pregnant women were moved to state-run health centres and hospitals, the commissioner said.

The IMD advised total suspension of fishing operations and shifting of coastal hutment dwellers to safe places.

Sea conditions will remain rough to very rough along and off the West Bengal coast till Friday evening.

The CWC has said that the great danger signal no. 10 hoisted at Kalingapatnam could be replaced with local cautionary signal number three (LC-III) and the great danger signal no. 8 hoisted at Visakhapatnam and Gangavaram Ports could replaced with local cautionary signal number three (LC-III).

It was also very likely to intensify further into a very severe cyclonic storm during the next 18 hours till early Thursday, the India Meteorological Department said. Kendrapara, Khurda, Nayagarh, Cuttack, Jajpur, Bhadrak and Balasore are expected to receive very heavy rainfall on Wednesday and Thursday, the IMD said.