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Cyclone Titli leaves 8 dead in AP, causes widespread damage in Odisha

Press Trust of India  |  Amaravati(AP)/Bhubaneswar 

Cyclone 'Titli' made landfall on the eastern coast of the country early on Thursday claiming eight lives and wrecking havoc in and districts of Andhra Pradesh, while causing widespread damage in neighbouring Odisha.

While no loss of lives were reported in Odisha, the "very severe" cyclonic storm left a trail of destruction in and Ganjam districts of state, uprooting trees, electric poles and damaging hutments.

According to the Meteorological Department (IMD), Cyclone Titli made its landfall near Palasa in district, south west of Gopalpur in Odisha with an estimated maximum sustained surface wind speed of 140-150 kmph gusting to 165 kmph between 4.30 am and 5.30 am.

The State Disaster Management Authority (SDMA) said the cyclone caused widespread damage in and Vizianagaram, and threw normal life out of gear as heavy to very heavy rains lashed the two north coastal districts districts since late Wednesday night.

While a 62-year-old woman died at Gudivada Agraharam village after a tree fell on her, a 55-year-old man died in a house collapse at Rotanasa village in Srikakulam district, the SDMA said.

The Chief Minister's Office (CMO) said the six others killed were fishermen who had ventured into the sea.

Of the 67 fishing boats that had gone into the sea over the last few days from Kakinada in district, 65 had returned to the shore safely, the CMO said, adding efforts were on to bring back the remaining two boats.

The in Srikakulam district suffered extensive damage, while the was also severely affected. More than 2,000 electric poles were uprooted by strong winds.

The Distribution Company, that caters to the of the north coastal districts of Andhra Pradesh, reported that the distribution system for 4,319 villages and six towns in Srikakulam district was affected.

In Odisha, Cyclone Titli led to very heavy rainfall in Ganjam, and Puri districts and caused minor damage to power supply and communication.

In all, eight districts -- Ganjam, Gajapati, Khurda, Puri, Jagatsinghpur, Kendrapara, Bhadrak and Balasore -- have been affected by the cyclonic storm, B P Sethi said.

"There has been no major destruction or report of casualty from any part of the state so far. Some damages like uprooting of trees and electric poles and damage to hutments were reported from Ganjam and districts," he said.

Power supply and got disrupted, and road communication snapped due to uprooted trees at many places in Gajapati district, Sethi said, adding efforts are now on to clear the blocked roads and to restore power supply in affected areas.

reviewed the situation in the state and instructed officials to expedite restoration efforts once the situation improves. He also directed the officials concerned to provide relief materials to cyclone-affected people.

"The gave instruction to send two more teams of NDRF to Gajapati where extensive damage has been caused to roads, hutments, electric and telephone poles," A P Padhi said.

Thirteen teams of the (NDRF) and Disaster have been deployed in affected areas along with fire brigade personnel.

"The damage is less than what we had feared," the said.

Padhi said the on Wednesday evacuated over three lakh people to safe places, which helped avoid loss of life in the natural calamity.

The evacuees are housed in 1,112 shelters where and sanitation facilities are available, he said.

Traffic on the was hit at places due to uprooted trees.

According to Railway sources, between Khurda Road in Odisha and in remained suspended since 10 pm Wednesday.

"We are optimistic about restoration of on the route by (Thursday) evening," said Railway Chief PRO J P Mishra.

Some railway station buildings were damaged at a few places, including in Palasa. Signal poles and overhead electric masts were damaged at places between Palasa and Kottabomali stations, he said.

The South Central Railway as well as the Railway cancelled several trains while some were terminated midway. A few express trains were diverted.

Horticulture crops suffered extensive damage in Srikakulam district while paddy suffered damage in Coconut plantations, banana and mango trees were the worst hit in the cyclonic storm, according to a preliminary report by the SDMA.

The cyclonic storm system is now moving northeastwards towards Gangetic West Bengal across Odisha and will weaken gradually, the IMD said.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, October 11 2018. 18:30 IST
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