IMD issues 'red warning' to five coastal districts in Andhra Pradesh

VISAKHAPATNAM/RAJAHMUNDRY: A ‘red warning’ was issued to five districts of the state by the India Meteorological Department (IMD) on Monday in the wake of the deep depression that has formed over the Bay of Bengal and is likely to cross the AP coast on Tuesday morning.
The IMD warned of heavy to very heavy rainfall at some places with extremely heavy rainfall at one or two places in Visakhapatnam, Vizianagaram, Srikakulam and the two Godavari districts. Heavy to very heavy rainfall is also likely to occur at isolated places in Krishna, Kurnool, Guntur and Prakasam districts.
Some areas of the state received over 200mm rainfall over the last two days under the influence of the deep depression. Vizag city area received over 180mm rainfall since Sunday, while the airport area received around 165mm of rainfall. “Rains along with squally winds with a maximum speed of 70-kmph will prevail at most places of the five districts due to the influence of the deep depression,” IMD regional director S Stella said.
The IMD has issued ‘orange warning’ to Krishna and Kurnool districts, which specifies heavy to very heavy rains at isolated places. All the other districts are likely to receive light to moderate rains. All ports in the state have been issued cautionary signals (signal number 3), while the fisheries department has been instructed to issue alerts at the fishing harbours and warn fishermen against venturing into the sea.
West Godavari collector R Muthyala Raju said all coastal mandals have been put on high alert. “The deep depression will cross the state between Narsapur (West Godavari) and Visakhapatnam. We have put the district administration on alert to ensure that power supply and telephone lines are restored and roads are cleared at the earliest if required,” he said.
East Godavari joint collector Lakshmi Sha said cyclone shelters have been set up in Amalapuram area and rehabilitation centres are also in place. “The National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and disaster response force of the state have been kept on standby. A dedicated helpline (180-4253077) has been set up in the district collectorate. The Kakinada-Uppada beach road has been closed as a precautionary measure,” the joint collector said.
Meanwhile, two shops situated in the municipal complex on the main road at Peddapuram town in East Godavari district collapsed due to heavy rains on Monday. Another four shops are on the brink of collapse.
Fortunately, there was no loss of lives as the shop-owners had left the shops an hour before the structures crumbled. Also, as most shops in Peddapuram market remain closed on Mondays, there were very few people in the municipal market complex. Peedapuram RDO Malli Babu said that civic authorities had issued notices to vacate the 45-year-old municipal complex, but the shop-owners did not pay heed.

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