How Tamil Nadu is bracing for Cyclone Nivar
Chennai, Nov 24: Authorities in Tamil Nadu are working on a war footing as the state braces for cyclonic storm Nivar, which is likely to cross its coast between Karaikal and Mamallapuram on Wednesday.
The government on Monday reviewed the situation and directed the district administrations to be on guard as the depression of the Bay of Bengal is likely to intensify into a cyclonic storm by Tuesday and cross the coast as a severe cyclonic storm a day later.
The officials have been asked to be on high alert and take precautionary measures ahead of Cyclone Nivar. A number of directions have been issued and departments have been asked to be on standby with required equipment such as earthmovers, trucks in Pudukottai, Cuddalore, Nagapattinam, Tanjavur, Tiruvarur, Villupuram and
The officials have also been told to evacuate people from vulnerable areas. Six teams of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) have been told to be stationed at Cuddalore and Chennai with equipment.
In Cuddalore, Nagapattinam, Tanjavur, Tiruvarur, Villupuram, Chengalpattu and Pudukottai districts suspension of inter and intra bus services were announced starting 1 pm on Tuesday. The people have also been advised to avoid travelling on their own. People should stock themselves with torch lights, candles, match boxes and avoid venturing out during the gusty winds.
The depression is very likely to intensify into a cyclonic storm during next 24 hours, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) said in a bulletin.
"It is very likely to move northwestwards and cross Tamil Nadu and Puducherry coasts between Karaikal and Mamallapuram around November 25 afternoon as a severe cyclonic storm with a wind speed of 100-110 kmph gusting to 120 kmph," it said.
Under its influence, widespread rainfall/thunderstorm were "very likely" over Tamil Nadu, Puducherry and Karaikal during November 24 to 26, the IMD warned. Isolated extremely heavy rainfall was very likely over Pudukottai, Thanjavur, Tiruvarur, Karaikal, Nagapattinam, Cuddalore, Ariyalur and Perambalur, Kallakurichi, Puducherry, Villupuram, Tiruvannamalai, Chengalpattu between Wednesday and Thursday.
As a result, a high alert has been sounded in Nagapattinam and fishermen have been asked not to venture into the sea till November 26. Tamil Nadu Chief Minister K Palaniswami, who held a review meeting here, asked his cabinet colleagues and officials to remain fully alert and take appropriate precautionary measures. At the "NIVAR Cyclone" review meeting, a number of directions were issued, he later said in a statement.
These included officials of various departments being on standby with required equipment, earth movers, trucks and other machinery from Monday onwards in Pudukottai, Cuddalore, Nagapattinam, Tanjavur, Tiruvarur, Villupuram and Chengalpattu districts, he said. Evacuation of people in vulnerable areas, facilities, including supply of food in relief camps, safeguarding boats and nets of fishermen, taking up fogging operations, monitoring water levels in big lakes and provision of mobile communication units should be ensured, he said. Further, since the cyclone is slated to cross the coast in north Tamil Nadu, six NDRF teams should be stationed in Cuddalore and two in Chennai with required equipment, he said.
He announced suspension of inter and intra-district bus services in Cuddalore, Nagapattinam, Tanjavur, Tiruvarur, Villupuram, Chengalpattu and Pudukottai districts from 1 PM on Tuesday till further orders and appealed the people to avoid travel by own vehicles except for essential requirements. People should stock themselves with torch lights, candles and matchboxes. They should also avoid venturing out during gusty winds, he added. Revenue Minister R B Udayakumar and Electricity Minister P Thangamani expressed preparedness of their ministries to respond to any challenges arising due to the cyclone. Udayakumar told reporters that all arrangements are in place to face the cyclone and special attention will be given to follow social distancing norms in the relief shelters owing to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Those living in low lying areas should immediately shift to relief camps, he said.
Thangamani said power supply will be cut off when the storm crosses the coast on November 25, as a precaution. Cuddalore district has been given priority due to heavy rains. About 1.5 lakh electric poles are available with the government, he added.