Kerala flood live: Situation unprecedented; many stranded; airport closed; death toll rises


Kerala flood situation remains precarious with water levels still rising dangerously in many rivers and people are stranded in many areas

Rescue officials assist villagers out of a flooded area following heavy monsoon rainfall, near Kochi

Kerala flood situation remains precarious with water levels still rising dangerously in many rivers and people are stranded in many areas waiting for help to arrive. Rescue operations are in full swing with army and local authorities heading efferent to secure lives and disburse aid materials to stranded people. 

Do you know someone who needs help? Here are the Kerala helpline numbers:
State Emergency Operations Centre: 0471-23664424; Toll Free Numbers: 1077, 1070

Highlights

• All the 44 rivers in Kerala are overflowing at present
• 33 water reservoirs in Kerala have opened their floodgates after incessant rain in catchment areas
• Death toll reaches 79, more than 70,000 people in relief camps
• Kochi Metro stops operations
• Red alert in all 14 districts in Kerala
• Railway traffic affected in the state
• One of three major airports in the state, Cochin International Airport shut down till Saturday
• Holiday declared for all educational institutions in Kerala
• State government cancelled Onam celebrations

Toll touches 79, rains continue

With rains still pouring down heavilty leading to flooding of dams and rivers across Kerala, 12 fresh deaths were reported on Thursday, taking the toll to 79, since August 8.

Entire Kerala has been on a red alert since Wednesday evening. A total of 28 deaths were reported on the day.

The deaths on Thursday were reported from Malappuram, Kozhikode, Palakkad and Thrissur.

Pathanamthitta district in central Kerala has been the worst affected in the last 24 hours as thousands of people — students among others were trapped in their homes in Ranni, Aranmula and Kozhencherry.

Fishing boats from Kollam reached the flooded areas as the rescue operation with the aid of defence personnel continued.

Various media Whats App groups, including Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan’s have been flooded with SOS messages from Pathanamthitta crying for help.

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Parts of Ernakulam and Thrissur have been facing tough times with the dam waters from Idukki districts reaching Periyar, and its tributaries late on Wednesday.

Traffic on the national highway between Ernakulam and Thrissur has been regulated since.

Train operations between Ernakulam and Angamaly have also been stopped and at Thiruvananthapuram railway station tickets are not being issued.

Disaster Response Force evacuates 926 to safety  

 

 

 

Water level in Mullaperiyar Dam at 142 feet

 

Southern Railways, Kochi Metro suspend operations 

The public transport system collapsed in many parts of central Kerala with the Southern Railways and Kochi Metro on Thursday suspending their operations due to floods.

Rise in flood waters in Periyar river due to continuous rains and opening of all shutters of all major dams including Mullaperiyar, Cheruthoni, part of Idukki reservoir, and Idamalayar, have severely hit life of people in the downstream areas.

The floods have affected the transport system to the Kochi city.

“Due to rise in water level at Bridge No 176 on Downline between Angamali and Aluva, The services on this bridge is suspended,” a Southern railway spokesman said in a statement early Thursday.

The Kochi Metro Rail Limited (KMRL) also suspended its operations this morning after its yard in Muttom near Aluva submerged in the flood waters.

“Kochi Metro train operation is suspended as the water level rises in Muttom yard area,” a KMRL statement said.

The service will be resumed once the water comes down and the systems are back in good condition, its spokesperson said.

Bus services to Kochi were also affected after National Highways connecting the city submerged in Kalamassery area, officials said.

Cochin International Airport had yesterday suspended all flight operations till Saturday as water entered in the airport area following continuous rains and the opening of dam shutters in Periyar river. 

Death toll reaches 75

The flood toll in the south Indian state of Kerala jumped to 75 after 7 deaths were reported on Thursday.  25 people were reported dead on Wednesday, with more than 50,000 people seeking shelter in relief camps.

Kerala is battered by the monsoon every year but the rains have been particularly severe this season, flooding hundreds of villages and prompting the authorities to suspend flights in and out of the region.

“The situation is bad in many parts of the state and the number (of deaths) will likely increase,” a senior official from the Kerala State Disaster Management Authority said.

UAE embassy helpline numbers

UAE embassy in New Delhi has requested Emiratis in India to call for assistance on 00911126111111 in case of emergencies. They can also call State Department’s Call Center at 80044444, the embassy said in a tweet.

 

 

Kerala helpline numbers

Kerala State Disaster Management Authority has posted the emergency helpline numbers for various districts 

Red alert in all 14 states

The official added that authorities had issued a “red-alert” warning in all 14 districts of the flood-ravaged state, with heavy downpours expected over the next 24 hours in many of the worst affected areas.

Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan’s office announced on Twitter that Kochi International Airport – the main gateway to the region – would be closed until Saturday “due to heavy rains and resultant flooding”.

Water level in Achankoil river at Alappuzha’s Kollakadavu rises

 

 

 

Vijayan held emergency meetings with rescue officials in the state late Wednesday and discussed the situation with Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

7 people rescued in Ranni, Pathanamthitta

The chief minister has requested the deployment of additional personnel from the Indian army, navy and other emergency forces who are already working across the state, which is home to around 33 million people.

“Our state is in the midst of an unprecedented flood havoc,” Vijayan said earlier this week. “The calamity has caused immeasurable misery and devastation.”

Authorities have opened the gates of 34 reservoirs as water reached dangerous levels.

Vijayan’s office on Wednesday said that the authorities were also worried about rising water levels in the massive Mullaperiyar dam, and urged officials in the neighbouring state of Tamil Nadu to release water from the reservoir.

Hundreds of villages have been flooded, more than 10,000 kilometres (6,000 miles) of roads and thousands of homes have been destroyed or damaged across the state, officials said.

“We have asked all airlines, domestic and foreign, to reschedule their Cochin flights either from Trivandrum or from Calicut,” Suresh Prabhu, India’s civil aviation minister said on Twitter.

“For international flights, this will require special dispensation which has been granted considering the emergency DGCA (Directorate General of Civil Aviation) is coordinating,” he added.

The US embassy last week advised Americans to avoid Kerala, which drew more than one million foreign tourists last year, according to official data.





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