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Authorities start to release water from key Chennai reservoir as storage gets almost full

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Chennai, Nov 25: As the storage level touched 3,000 million cubic feet in the Chembarambakkam reservoir as against it full capacity of 3,645 Mcft, authorities on Wednesday began releasing about 1,000 cusecs into the Adyar river as a precautionary measure.

Chembarambakkam

As the surplus waters gushed forth with the opening of shutters after about five years, people gathered to witness the water release along the river bank. However, they were advised by the authorities to move away considering their safety while intermittent rains lashed the city and suburbs.

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A flood control official of the Public Works Department said the storage level was close to 22 feet as against the full height of 24 feet. As per norms inflows received from now onwards should be released 'as it is' and it would be done in a phased manner, the official said.

The storage has increased in view of inflows from the Krishna river coupled with the monsoon rains and the current inflow stood at 4,027 cusecs (cubic feet per second), he said in a communique.

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An alert, already sent by the PWD to local authorities said, "the outflow will be increased step by step based on the inflows."

The Chembarambakkam reserovir, among the very four important drinking water sources to Chennai is spread across 25.51 square kilometers and it is located in Kancheepuram district's Kundrathur taluk.

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The Adyar river empties into the sea, traversing city localities like Kotturpuram and suburban neighbourhoods including Sirugalathur and Kundrathur.

With the flooding of the city in 2015 still fresh in the minds of the people after surplus water was discharged from Chembarambakkam, authorities said there was no cause for any concern since what unfolded then was entirely different from the current scenario.

The Greater Chennai Corporation said it has cleaned up the Adyar creek besides other canals and lakes like Mambalam and Velachery respectively.

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    The GCC said it has already advised people living close to the river like those in Jafferkhanpet to move to its shelters adding "169 shelters are open and ready." For assistance, people may contact them at 044-25384530 and 044-25384540, the GCC said.

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