Thiruvananthapuram: Five districts of Kerala were put under a red alert on Friday by India Meteorological Department (IMD) in view of the developing low-pressure areas over Lakshadweep and the Arabian sea that are expected to intensify into Cyclone Tauktae.
In the revised weather forecast, IMD sounded a red alert for heavy to extremely heavy rainfall in Thiruvananthapuram, Kollam, Pathanamthitta, Alappuzha and Ernakulam districts today.
“The National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) teams have been posted in nine districts of Kerala particularly in coastal areas and hilly terrains including those in Idukki district that in the past has witnessed landslides due to heavy rain,” said an NDRF official.
Meanwhile, district administrations have directed people in disaster-prone areas to relocate and temporary relief camps and the evacuation process have been started.
For tomorrow (Saturday), a red alert has been issued for five districts of Malappuram, Kozhikode, Wayanad, Kannur and Kasargod while the rest of the districts barring Thiruvananthapuram and Palakkad were put under orange alert.
Fishing has been completely banned on the Kerala coast and due to the rough sea, and authorities have asked fishermen for the safe upkeep of fishing equipment.
An NDRF official informed that nine teams have been deployed in Kerala.
The teams have been deployed in disaster-prone areas including coastal regions and hilly terrains. One of the team has been posted at Cheruthoni in the Idukki district in view of the approaching cyclone, said the official.
Control rooms have been set up in each district and people have been urged to follow COVID protocol while shifting to camps in wake of any eventuality. Those living in disaster-prone areas are also asked to prepare an emergency kit and avoid travelling.
The IMD had earlier forecast a likeliness of intensification of a cyclonic storm, Tauktae, over the low-pressure area over the southeastern Arabian Sea and adjoining Lakshadweep area by May 16.
The cyclone is likely to impact areas including the coast of Kerala, Karnataka, Lakshadweep, Goa, and Maharashtra.
IMD, yesterday, issued a warning for the fishermen to not venture into the sea till May 17. IMD also said the wind speed of 40-50 km per hour might intensify to 70 km per hour on May 15, and may even reach 80 km per hour by May 16.