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File photo: Hindustan Times
File photo: Hindustan Times

Kerala braces for more rain, three districts on red alert

Kerala could witness another round of extremely heavy rainfall over 5-8 October

Bengaluru: Kerala, which is still struggling to cope with the effects of the devastating floods that hit the state in August, is likely to experience another spell of extremely heavy rainfall between 5 October and 8 October.

A red alert has been issued by the India Meteorological Department (IMD) on Wednesday in Idukki, Thrissur and Palakkad districts, while a yellow alert has been issued in most other districts IMD issues yellow alert for a forecast of significant rainful and red alert for a forecast of heavy rainfall.

IMD has predicted that a low-pressure area is likely to form over South-East Arabian Sea around 6 October, which would intensify into a depression and move north-westward in the subsequent 48 hours.

“Heavy rainfall (7-11 cm) to very heavy rainfall (12-20 cm) is most likely to occur at one or two places in Kerala on 3-6 October and extremely heavy rainfall (21- above 24cm) is most likely to occur in one or two places on 7 October," said the Kerala disaster management cell.

“There is no need to panic, but caution is advised," said Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan, listing a series of precautionary measures at a press meet on Wednesday evening.

Earlier in the day he held an urgent meeting of top officials to assess the developments.

The state has banned fishermen from going out to sea and asked district collectors to be ready with resources to open relief camps if needed, the chief minister said.

Vijayan also asked locals and tourists to avoid travelling in hilly areas, especially Idukki district’s Munnar, which is seeing a surge in tourists to see the once-in-12-years blooming of the flower ‘Neelakurinji’.

“We advise people to exercise caution from October 5-8 as exceptionally heavy rains accompanied with squally winds are likely. Threat of localized flash flooding, landslides and overflowing of rivers and dams is looming large over the state," said private weather forecasting agency Skymet on its website.

IMD has also predicted heavy rain this week in coastal districts of neighbouring Karnataka and scattered rain in other parts of the state.

Sharan Poovanna contributed to this story.

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