Severe Cyclone Michaung Set To Hit Andhra Coast


(MENAFN- IANS) Vijayawada, Dec 5 (IANS) Andhra Pradesh administration is on high alert as a severe cyclonic storm 'Michaung' is set to cross the coast near Bapatla on Tuesday afternoon.

According to the India Meteorological Department, the cyclone lay centered about 25 km north-northeast of Nellore, 20 km east of Kavali, 110 km south-southwest of Bapatla and 170 km south-southwest of Machilipatnam at 5.30 a.m. Tuesday.

As the system is nearly moving northwards close to the coast, some part of the wall cloud region lies over the land. The system is likely to move nearly northwards parallel and close to south Andhra Pradesh coast and cross south Andhra Pradesh coast between Nellore and Machilipatnam, close to Bapatla, it said.

The MeT office has forecast strong winds with a speed of 90-100 kmph gusting to 110 kmph in the region.

Officials said the sea is rough and the coast may see tidal waves of up to 1 to 1.5 meters. Fishermen have already been warned against venturing into the sea.

Several parts of Rayalaseema and coastal Andhra have been experiencing heavy rain since Monday. A couple of places, including in Tirupati district, recorded rainfall of 39 cm during the last 24 hours.

Incessant rain was lashing Srikakulam, Vizianagaram, Visakhapatnam, Kakinada, Rajamahendravaram, Bhimavaram, Eluru, Vijayawada, Machilipatnam, Guntur, Ongole, Nellore and Tirupati.

The rain has disrupted road transport at a few places. Low-lying areas in parts of Tirupati, Nellore, Krishna and Guntur districts were inundated.

Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy has directed the district Collectors, SPs and officials of various departments to be on high alert for taking up relief measures.

Holding a review meeting virtually from the Camp Office, the Chief Minister told them to treat the cyclone as a major challenge and take necessary steps to avoid loss of life and property as the cyclonic winds are expected to blow at a speed of over 110 km.

Collectors of Tirupati, SPSR Nellore, Prakasam, Bapatla, Krishna, West Godavari, Dr BR Ambedkar Konaseema and Kakinada districts explained the relief and rescue preparedness in their respective districts.

The Chief Minister said that special officers have been appointed for all cyclone affected districts besides releasing Rs 2 crore each for rescue and relief works.

The special officers will work in close coordination with the Collectors and if more funds are needed, the government will comply with the request, he said, adding that Collectors can seek any other support forthwith.

As the official machinery has the experience of tackling cyclones like 'Hudhud', it should gear up in advance and take measures on war-footing to avoid loss of human lives and livestock.

Officials said that five NDRF and five SDRF teams are deployed in the vulnerable areas and out of the required 308 camps, 181 relief camps have been opened and people are being shifted from the vulnerable areas,

--IANS

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