Cyclone Helen may hit Andhra Pradesh on Wednesday night, alert issued

HelenIMD said that the deep depression over west-central Bay of Bengal would intensify into a severe cyclonic storm in the next 24 hours. (Photo Courtesy: IMD Website)

The National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) and the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) issued alerts for coastal Andhra Pradesh that is expected to be hit by Cyclone 'Helen' from Wednesday night.

Fishermen have been advised not to venture out into the sea for fishing in North Coastal districts and total suspension of fishing operations in South Coastal districts of Andhra Pradesh.

Photo: IMD Website

"Under the influence of the cyclone there would be heavy to very heavy rainfall at a few places over coastal AP from Wednesday night, isolated extremely heavy rainfall (25 cm or more) would occur over south coastal AP on 21st November," said a statement issued by NDMA.

An official said there would be heavy wind flow also starting at a speed of 55-65 kmph, which can go upto gale wind speed of 100-110 kmph. At the time of landfall, the speed could increase to 120 kmph also.

"Storm surge of about 1 to 1.5 m height above astronomical tide would inundate low lying areas of Nellore, Prakasham, Guntur, and Krishna districts of AP at the time of landfall," said an official. A round the clock control room has been opened at the Secretariat in Hyderabad. "Control rooms at district, division, mandal levels opened in the above four districts. Other coastal districts also alerted. Supervisory officers at district, mandal levels being appointed with instructions to stay at headquarters until further orders," an officer said.

Six NDRF teams have been rushed to Ongole, Kavali, Guntur and Krishna districts. "District Collectors have been instructed to take all precautionary measures and ensure that people in low lying areas are evacuated to safer places and ensure zero casualties," said the official. In Nellore 52 habitations identified as likely to be inundated and Collector nformed to evacuate the people in these habitations if necessary.

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