Heavy rains lash Kerala, IMD issues red alert for two districts

Heavy rains lash Kerala, IMD issues red alert for two districts

Kochi | As Kerala reels under the impact of heavy pre-monsoon rains, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) on Thursday revised its weather forecast and issued a red alert for two districts in the state.

A red alert indicates heavy to extremely heavy rain of over 20 cm in 24 hours.

Meanwhile, heavy rains continued to lash several parts of the state, leading to waterlogging in the low-lying areas of major cities, including Thiruvananthapuram, Kochi, Thrissur and Kozhikode.

The weather department issued a red alert for Ernakulam and Thrissur districts. Earlier, these two place were placed under orange alert.

An orange alert was also sounded in Pathanamthitta, Alappuzha, Kottayam, Idukki, Palakkad, Malappuram, Kozhikode and Wayanad districts of the state.

An orange alert denotes very heavy rainfall of 11 cm to 20 cm, and a yellow alert means heavy rainfall between 6 cm and 11 cm.

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan advised people of the state to remain cautious.

"Intense rainfall expected within a short period of time may lead to flash floods. Urban and low-lying areas are particularly vulnerable to waterlogging. Prolonged rainfall can also trigger landslides. People should exercise caution during such weather events," he said in a Facebook post.

Currently, there are 223 people accommodated in eight relief camps functioning across the state.

The low-lying areas of Kochi city were flooded in the incessant rain. TV channels aired visuals of waterlogged KSRTC bus stand, the MG Road and other adjacent areas.

As per the Kerala State Disaster Management Authority (KSDMA), seven rain related deaths were reported in the state from May 19 to 23.

A total of 154 houses were partially damaged while three houses were fully damaged during the said period, KSDMA said. The relief camps were opened in Kozhikode, Malappuram, Ernakulam and Thiruvananthapuram districts in view of the heavy rains.

Widespread damage to roads and agriculture was also reported from across the state.

The Thuravoor area in the National Highway at Alappuzha was blocked for over three hours today. Parts of Kuttanad region in Alappuzha were also inundated.

Mavoor region of Kozhikode saw financial loss in the agriculture sector while minor landslides were reported from Malappuram and Kasaragod districts.

Thrissur town also suffered due to waterlogging. Shops and even some private hospitals were flooded.

Thrissur district administration has issued directions to authorities to desilt drains in their limits within seven days.

According to sources, flights from Kozhikode International airport were delayed owing to heavy rains.

Earlier in the day, four shutters of the Malankara dam in Idukki district were raised and the authorities asked people living along the banks of Thodupuzha and Moovattupuzha rivers to remain vigilant.

The KSDMA advised fishermen not to venture into the sea.

In the wake of the incessant rains, a state control room was set up in the Health Department Directorate at Thiruvananthapuram on Wednesday as part of efforts to strengthen epidemic prevention activities.

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