New Delhi: Cyclone Tauktae, which has intensified into an ‘extremely severe cyclonic storm, is predicted to hit Gujarat coast on Tuesday evening.
According to the weather office IMD, Cyclone Tauktae will make landfall in between 8 pm and 11 pm. It will pack ferocious wind speeds up to 165 km per hour and gusts up to 185 km per hour, NDTV reported.
Gujarat On Alert
Around 25,000 people have been evacuated from low-lying areas between Porbandar and Mahuva in Gujarat’s Bhavnagar district. Overall more than 1.5 lakh have been shifted across the state.
Officials are bracing for very heavy rainfall and wind speed up to 185 km per hour. Warnings are also in place in Junagarh, Gir Somnath and Amreli.
Massive damage is expected in Porbandar, Amreli, Junagarh, Gir Somnath and coastal Ahmedabad districts, including destruction of houses. Officials have warned of damage to power and communication lines. Flooding of roads and disruption to railway lines and signaling systems is expected. Damage is expected to salt pans and standing crops.
Mumbai Airport Shut
Mumbai experienced light rainfall and gusty winds early Monday. The airport has been closed till 2 pm. The city’s Bandra-Worli sea link has been closed. Five temporary shelters have been set up in each of the city’s 24 wards.
Besides, three NDRF teams are on alert.
Moderate to intense spells of rain in the city as well as Thane, Raigad, Palghar and Ratnagiri districts, are likely in the next few hours.
Disaster Teams Deployed
According to National Disaster Response Force head SN Pradhan, the number of NDRF teams has been increased to 101. Of these, 65 have been pre-deployed. Quick response medical teams and public health teams, with stocks of emergency medicines, have also been deployed.
Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani has directed officials to ensure electricity supply to COVID-19 hospitals and other medical facilities. Gujarat is one of the worst affected states during the second Covid wave; with over 1.11 lakh active cases.
As for the worst his state of Maharashtra, the government announced it would ensure power and oxygen for hospitals. It has also relocated patients at COVID and non-COVID facilities in coastal areas, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray’s office said.
At present, Maharashtra has nearly five lakh active cases.