Cyclone 'Michaung' to hit Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu coasts; 21 NDRF teams deployed

Cyclone 'Michaung' to hit Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu coasts; 21 NDRF teams deployed

Cyclone 'Michaung' to hit Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu coasts; 21 NDRF teams deployed

The National Crisis Management Committee (NCMC) announced on Sunday that the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) has sent out 21 teams for rescue and relief operations in anticipation of Cyclone “Michaung,” which is predicted to make landfall on the west-central Bay of Bengal off the coasts of south Andhra Pradesh and neighbouring north Tamil Nadu by December 4 forenoon.

The inputs were presented earlier on Sunday at the second NCMC meeting, which was chaired by Cabinet Secretary Rajiv Gauba. Reviewing state governments’ and federal ministries’ and departments’ readiness for the approaching cyclone “Michaung” in the Bay of Bengal was the purpose of the conference.

The committee was briefed by the Director General of the India Meteorological Department (IMD) on the current state of cyclonic storm “Michaung”.

“The cyclonic storm over the southwest Bay of Bengal moved northwestwards with a speed of nine kmph during the past six hours and lay centred at 4.30 pm on Sunday over the same region near latitude 11.8 degrees North and longitude 82.2 degrees East, about 260 km east-southeast of Puducherry, 250 km southeast of Chennai, 380 km south-southeast of Nellore, 490 km south-southeast of Bapatla and 500 km south-southeast of Machilipatnam,” IMD Director General informed the NCMC.

Chief Secretaries of Tamil Nadu, Odisha, Puducherry and Special Chief Secretary, Revenue and Disaster Management, Andhra Pradesh apprised the committee of the preparatory measures being taken.

The committee was informed that low-lying areas have been identified and evacuation of people to relief centers has started. Alerts are being issued in local languages through SMS and weather bulletins. Fishermen and vessels at sea have returned to safety.

“Essential commodities have been stocked. The local administration has deployed a sufficient number of officials for 24/7 supervision and monitoring of the situation,” mentioned the statement.

The NDRF has deployed 21 teams in Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Puducherry and eight additional teams have been kept in reserve. Rescue and relief teams of the Coast Guard, Army and Navy along with ships and aircraft have been kept on standby, it further said.

Reviewing preparedness measures of the central agencies and governments of Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Odisha and Puducherry, the Cabinet Secretary stressed that all preventive and precautionary measures should be taken.

“He said that the aim should be to avoid any loss of life and minimize property damage. Evacuation should be completed timely. He also directed that timely alerts should be sent in local languages,” pointed out the statement.

The Cabinet Secretary directed the Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways, the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas and the Indian Coast Guard that all boats/ vessels and manpower deployed at offshore installations should be moved to risk-free areas immediately.

He assured the Governments of Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Odisha and Puducherry that a sufficient number of NDRF teams shall be deployed as per requirement and all Central agencies are available for any assistance.

The meeting was attended by the Chief Secretary of Tamil Nadu, Odisha and Puducherry, the Special Chief Secretary, of Revenue and Disaster Management, Andhra Pradesh, the Union Home Secretary, Secretary, of the Department of Fisheries, the Secretary, of the Ministry of Power, Secretary, Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways, Secretary, Department of Telecommunications, Additional Secretary, Petroleum and Natural Gas, Member Secretary NDMA, DG IMD, DG Coast Guard, CISC IDS, IG NDRF and senior officers from the Ministry of Home Affairs. The first NCMC meeting was conducted on December 1.

(With agency inputs)