·

Tropical Cyclone “Gaja” makes landfall in Tamil Nadu, leaving at least 33 people dead

tropical-cyclone-gaja-landfall-tamil-nadu-damage-casualties-november-2018

Tropical Cyclone "Gaja" made in Tamil Nadu, India, between Nagapattinam and Vedarannyam, on November 15, 2018, with maximum sustained winds up to 139 km/h (83 mph). This made it a Category 1 hurricane equivalent on the Saffir-Simpson hurricane wind scale. 

The storm brought heavy rain and strong winds to Tamil Nadu, Puducherry and areas of South Interior Karnataka and Kerala. As of November 16, at least 28 people lost their lives in floods, landslides and other weather-related incidents. The death toll is expected to rise.

As many as 81 948 people were forced to evacuate and are now temporarily housed in 471 relief centers.

The heavy rains have largely affected Munnar, one of the main tourist destinations in Idukki, and traffic was partially disrupted on a part of its Kochi-Dhanushkodi national highway.

Landslides were reported in Mammal and Edamal areas in Vattavada near Munnar as well as in various parts of Idukki . A home in Vattavda was partially destroyed due to the landslides. The landslides and heavy rain also submerged acres of winter vegetable farms in Vattavada.

A car was trapped in a mud puddle in Panniyarkutty near Adimali due to a landslide. The passengers narrowly escaped.

A mudslide was reported near Mattuppetty road in Munnar and the traffic disrupted in the top station route.

Incidentally, the recently rebuilt Periyavara Bridge was also washed out due to heavy rain on Friday.  The bridge, which is on the Munnar-Udumalpet interstate route, connects tourists to Rajamala tourist destination and the Eravikulam National Park.

No fisherman was stranded at sea in the wake of cyclone Gaja as the fisheries ministry had taken necessary measures on a war footing to ensure the safety of fisher folks and protect their boats and equipment, Tamil Nadu minister D Jayakumar said on Friday.

According to the state power utility, about 500 km (310 miles) of power supply lines were affected. Officials said it would take at least two days to restore power supply in Tamil Nadu's Nagapattinam and Thiruvarur districts. 

Authorities closed schools and colleges and thousands of emergency workers were on standby along with two naval ships with divers, helicopters and inflatable boats, NDTV reports.

Gaja is the second major storm to hit India's east coast in recent weeks, after Cyclone "Titli" hit Odisha in October, killing at least two people.

Storms regularly hit southern India between April and December. Last year, Cyclone "Ockhi" left nearly 250 people dead in Tamil Nadu and Kerala.

As of 15:00 UTC on November 16, Gaja was located approximately 28 km (17.4 miles) SSE of Cochin and was expected to soon exit into the Arabian Sea and continue tracking westward under the high-zonal subtropical ridge to the north across the Arabian Sea.

The system will gradually weaken, mostly due to the combination of diminishing upper level outflow and the influx of cold dry air from the North offsetting the low vertical wind shear and warm along-track sea surface temperatures.

Dissipation is expected over the next 72 hours.

Update

The death toll has reached 33, a disaster official said November 18.

"So far 20 men, 11 women, and two children have died due to the cyclone," said an official with the state disaster management authority, who asked not to be named as he was not authorized to speak to media.

"As of now, 177 500 people are housed in over 351 camps. Thousands of trees have been uprooted and livestock has also been badly affected," he told AFP.

Featured image credit @ModifiedTamilan

If you value what we do here, create your ad-free account and support our journalism.

Share:

Related articles



Your support makes a difference

Dear valued reader,

We hope that our website has been a valuable resource for you.

The reality is that it takes a lot of time, effort, and resources to maintain and grow this website. We rely on the support of readers like you to keep providing high-quality content.

If you have found our website to be helpful, please consider making a contribution to help us continue to bring you the information you need. Your support means the world to us and helps us to keep doing what we love.

Support us by choosing your support level – Silver, Gold or Platinum. Other support options include Patreon pledges and sending us a one-off payment using PayPal.

Thank you for your consideration. Your support is greatly appreciated.

Sincerely,
Teo Blašković

$5 /month

  • Ad-free account
  • Clean user interface and fast browsing
  • Direct communication with us via chat and email
  • Suggest new features, content and applications
  • Early access to new apps and features

$50 /year

$10 /month

  • Ad-free account
  • Clean user interface and fast browsing
  • Direct communication with us via chat and email
  • Suggest new features, content and applications
  • Early access to new apps and features

$100 /year

$25 /month

  • Ad-free account
  • Clean user interface and fast browsing
  • Direct communication with us via chat and email
  • Suggest new features, content and applications
  • Early access to new apps and features

$200 /year

You can also support us on Patreon

support us on patreon

or by sending us a one-off payment using PayPal:


Commenting rules and guidelines

We value the thoughts and opinions of our readers and welcome healthy discussions on our website. In order to maintain a respectful and positive community, we ask that all commenters follow these rules:

  • Treat others with kindness and respect.
  • Stay on topic and contribute to the conversation in a meaningful way.
  • Do not use abusive or hateful language.
  • Do not spam or promote unrelated products or services.
  • Do not post any personal information or content that is illegal, obscene, or otherwise inappropriate.

We reserve the right to remove any comments that violate these rules. By commenting on our website, you agree to abide by these guidelines. Thank you for helping to create a positive and welcoming environment for all.

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *