Weakening Cyclone Gulab brings very heavy rains to Visakhapatnam, other parts of North Andhra

By Express News Service

VIJAYAWADA: Very heavy to extremely heavy rain battered Visakhapatnam city and other parts of Visakhapatnam district, several places in Vizianagaram district, Srikakulam district, East Godavari, West Godavari, Krishna, and parts of Guntur district since Sunday late night, after Cyclone Gulab made landfall between Santhabommali and Vajrapukotthur in Srikakulam district. 

Within hours after landfall, Cyclone Gulab weakened into a deep depression and is expected to further reduce to a depression by Monday night. It is currently moving towards Chhattisgarh.

Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy is taking stock of the situation in north coastal districts in wake of Cyclone Gulab. He held a video conference with Deputy CM Dharmana Krishna Das, Chief Secretary Aditya Nath Das who is touring Vizag and Srikakulam, Shrikesh Lathkar, Srikakulam district collector, and other officials. 

Normal life in Visakhapatnam, Vijayawada, and several other cities, towns, and villages across the state were thrown out of gear following incessant rains. The highest rainfall of 33.3 cm was reported in the TTD Kalyanamandapam area of Visakhapatnam city. In the Adavivaram area of Vizag, 31.19 cm of rainfall was recorded followed by 31.47 cm in the New Railway colony. Pendurthi reported 30.8 cm of rainfall, followed by 25.2 cm in Gajuwaka in Vizag and Nellimarla in Vizianagaram, 25.1 cm in Gajapathinagaram of Vizianagaram district, 21.7 cm in Pusapatirega of the same district. Dwaraka Tirumala in West Godavari reported 20.9 cm of rain, Kothavalasa in Vizianagaram district reporte 20.6 cm, Gara in Srikakulam district reported 20.5 cm, Anakapalle in Visakhapatnam reported 16.8 cm.

A 31-year-old woman died following a rockslide on her house in Vepagunta of Pendurthi mandal in Visakhapatnam. Identified as Tulasi Bhavani of CPI colony in the Naidu Thota area, she is survived by her husband and two children. In view of very heavy rains, volunteers shifted the people in the CPI colony locality to a nearby relief shelter. On Monday morning, Tualsi Bhavani went home morning and boulders fell on her killing on the spot. The district collector and GVMC officials rushed to the spot. 

The ghat section of Simhachalam witnessed landslides but no casualties were reported. Both ghat roads have been closed. 

Several low-lying areas in Visakhapatnam were inundated in the rainwater and at a few places, trees were uprooted and fell on the roads. People were seen draining out the rainwater that entered their homes. Gangavaram port area was severely inundated in the rainwater. A school wall in Geddakancharam village of G Singadam mandal in Srikakulam district collapsed. Eight two-wheelers were damaged. However, luckily no casualties were reported. 

Eight mandals in Srikakulam district — Gara, Ranasthalam, Etcherla, Srikakulam, Narsannapeta, Polaki, Santhabommali, Laveru, G Singadam received very heavy rains, while Mandasa, Kaviti, Sompeta, Vajrapukotturu, Ichapauram, Kanchali received heavy rains. Various standing crops in thousands of acres were inundated in rainwater and the exact extent of loss will only be known after enumeration is completed. 

Agency areas in all three north coastal districts and twin Godavari districts were affected, with heavy inflows from upper catchment areas besides hill streams in spate. With Matsyagadda flowing dangerously in Munchingput of Visakhapatnam district, road connectivity to 20 hamlets is cut off. Uppugedda near Anakapalle is flowing dangerously. 

With very heavy rains battering the upper catchment areas of the Vamsadhara and Nagavali rivers, flood levels in both rivers are increasing fast. A high alert has been sounded in all the villages and towns along the course of both rivers. Revenue, police, and disaster management officials have been put on alert. 

Meanwhile, heavy rains battered Vijayawada and other parts of Krishna district, Kakinada, and other parts of East Godavari district.  Gannavaram airport in Vijayawada was flooded with rainwater hampering flight operations.

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