After the Indian Metrological Department (IMD) issued warnings to five coastal states against cyclone ‘Tauktae’ by May 16, the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) on Friday identified 53 teams to tackle possible after-effects of cyclonic storm which is developing in the Arabian Sea.
Taking to Twitter, NDRF Director General S N Pradhan said that these teams are being deployed in the coastal regions of Kerala, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Gujarat and Maharashtra. Out of the 53 teams, 24 have been pre-deployed or stationed on the ground while the 29 teams are on stand-by, he said.
A single NDRF team comprises about 40 personnel and they are armed with tree and pole cutters, boats, basic medical aid and other relief and rescue equipment.
As per the IMD and advisories issued by some of these costal states, a pressure area had formed over the southeast Arabian Sea and adjoining Lakshadweep area on Thursday. “It will concentrate into a depression over the same region by Saturday morning and intensify into a cyclonic storm during the subsequent 24 hours,” the IMD said in the warning report. It is very likely to intensify further and move north-northwestwards Gujarat and adjoining Pakistan coasts.
The IMD advisory said the cyclonic storm is likely to reach near the Gujarat coast around May 18 evening. The name ‘Tauktae’ has been given by Myanmar which means ‘gecko’. This is going to be the first cyclonic storm of this year along the Indian coast.
Here are the live updates on cyclonic storm ‘Tauktae’:
• In view of cyclonic storm, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) said that there will be no vaccination drive on May 15 and May 16 in Mumbai.
• Gujarat Chief Secretary Anil Mukim has conducted an emergency high-level meeting with DMs and SPs of 14 districts via video conferencing to discuss the preparedness in view of cyclone Tauktae.
• Considering the possibility of any damage due to cyclone, a Coast Guard helicopter is continuously patrolling Madhavpur and surrounding areas in coastal region. The Coast Guard team is also asking people to remain at their homes and stay alert.
• As many as 142 fishing boats have returned to the shore. The IMD has said that Ratnagiri and Sindhudurg districts are very likely to receive heavy to very heavy rainfall on Sunday and Monday, while Mumbai, Thane and Raigad would receive very heavy rainfall on Monday. Raigad is also expected to witness thunderstorm with lightning and gusty winds from Saturday onwards.
• The depression in the Arabian Sea is likely to intensify into a “very severe cyclonic storm” on May 17 and cross the Gujarat coast a day later, the IMD said on Friday. The weather condition has intensified into a deep depression. It is very likely to further intensify into cyclonic storm ‘Tauktae’ by Saturday morning. It is very likely to intensify further into a severe cyclonic storm by Saturday night.
• Due to cyclone, south Konkan and Goa region would receive light to moderate rainfall at many places on Saturday and its intensity would increase further and it would receive heavy to very heavy rainfall at a few places on Sunday and Monday, the IMD predicted. According to the weather forecast department, 64.5 mm to 115.5 mm rainfall in 24 hours is considered as heavy, while precipitation between 115.6 mm to 204.4 mm in 24 hours is termed as very heavy rainfall.
• In view of heavy rainfall warning, Kerala was put on high alert today with the government opening relief camps and shifting people living in low-lying areas to safer places as rains were lashing several parts of the state since Thursday night. The shutters of the Aruvikkara dam in Thiruvananthapuram were opened Thursday night due to heavy inflow and continuous downpour resulted in the Karamana and Killi rivers in the state capital to overflow.
• The depression formed over Lakshadweep in the Arabian Sea would turn into a cyclonic storm in the next 24 hours and reach near the Gujarat coast on the morning of May 18, officials said. This cyclonic activity would bring rain or thunderstorm in the coastal belt between May 16 and 18, with some of the places in the region receiving heavy to extremely heavy rainfall on Monday and Tuesday, they said.
• All ports in Gujarat have been asked to hoist a signal to warn fishermen against venturing into the sea. “As of now, there is no prediction whether it will make a landfall on the Gujarat coast, and a clear picture would emerge only by tomorrow,” said Manorama Mohanty, assistant director of the Meteorological Centre in Ahmedabad. Taking no chances, the Gujarat government has already alerted the collectors of all the coastal districts to take necessary steps for the safety of people.(with inputs from PTI)