Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan doing aerial survey of flood
11 August, 2018, 19:34
The state, which has 44 rivers, witnessed its worst floods in 1924 following torrential rains.
Kochi: Fifty-five people have so far been evacuated from flood hit areas in Kerala by the navy in its "Operation Madad" to assist the state government, following heavy rains and release of excess water from many dams. At least three times the volume of water being released nowis still to be drained out.
Top elected state official Pinarayi Vijayan says the flood situation has become "very grim" with the opening of sluice gates of almost two dozen overflowing water reservoirs.
However, this did not happen as the dam water entered the tributaries of the Periyar river in a systematic manner.
Father Abhilash Chirambikkunnel, an official of Thamaraserry Diocese, said officials were providing schools and other church institutions to accommodate people in Kozhikode and Wayanaddistricts. He appealed to people to be vigilant.
The United States consulate in Chennai issued a travel alert and advised the U.S. citizens to avoid visiting areas affected by landslides and flash flood. "Any other immediate assistance requested by the Government of Kerala will be provided", Alphons said in a Facebook post.
Col Ajai Sharma, the Commandant of DSC Centre, who is overseeing relief and rescue operations, said five columns of Army has been deployed in the northern districts since last night.
The authorities opened the gates of the Idamalayar dam on the morning of August 9 as the water breached its maximum height of 169 meters. A decision will be taken only after reviewing the flood situation downstream. There was no need to suspend flights and there has been no cancellations.
Crops on 1,031 hectares (2547.66 acres) have been damaged and 31,000 people have been forced to take shelter in rescue camps, according to the Kerala State Disaster Management Authority's (KSDMA) control room in the state capital.
The spokesperson said three contingents (50 men each) from INS Dronacharya, Venduruthy and Naval Air station INS Garuda were ready to be deployed as and when required, besides a medical team from INHS Sanjivani. Over 10,000 people are staying in relief camps in Wayanad and 7,500 in relief camps in Ernakulam. The government has asked tourists not to go to high-range areas and dam sites. In Palakkad district, the flood waters started receding on Friday as the quantity of water being released from Malampuzha dam was reduced. However, many areas are still inundated and people were seen trying to save their belongings.
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Drain or dump standing water weekly. - Limit outdoor activities between dusk and dawn when mosquitoes are most likely to bite. For more information, call the health department at 740-695-1202 or visit www.belmontcountyhealth.com.
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