The Indian Meteorological Department has issued red warning in seven districts in Kerala for Saturday, August 10, following incessant rains in the state. These include Ernakulam, Idukki, Palakkad, Malappuram, Kozhikode, Wayanad and Kannur. Orange warnings have been given to Pathanamthitta, Alappuzha, Kottayam, Thrissur and Kasargode. The latest update comes as no solace to Kerala as most of these districts are already reeling under floods and thousands have been shifted to relief camps. Landslides and mudslides in many of these regions have claimed more than 20 lives.
An earlier prediction on Friday had issued no red warning for Saturday.
In the last update given by Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, a total of 22 people have died in rain related incidents in the state. A total of 315 relief camps have been opened across the state. There are 22,165 people living in the camps. The number of people in the camps is the highest in Wayanad at 9,951 followed by Malappuram (4106) and Kozhikode (1653), CM Pinarayi said.
The Banasura Sagar dam on the Karamanathodu tributary of the Kabini river located 21 km from Wayanad district is nearing its FRL or Full Reservoir Level. The dam has an FRL of 775.6 meters.
"The dam is not open yet, its level on Friday morning was 771.1 meters and can hold water till 773 meters," informed Bibin Joseph, Chief Engineer (Dam Rehabilitation and Improvement Project & Dam Safety), KSEB. "As per the IMD reports the weather is expected to improve in the coming days. The gates will be opened keeping the course of the river in mind and it will be controlled opening," he added.
The CM, in a press meet, said that the water level of rivers like Periyar, Kuthirappuzha, Kurumanpuzha and Valapattanam has risen to a precarious level and Central Water Commission had warned about this. âHeavy rainfall is predicted for the next 24 hours and even if the rain recedes in areas, it is likely to be stronger in the valleys. Strong rain is continuing in Kozhikode, Wayanad and Malappuram districts. There is also a prediction of rain for August 15 and the sea may also turn rough with strong tides," the Chief Minister added.
Collection centre at Thiruvananthapuram Corporation
The Thiruvananthapuram Corporation has started a disaster relief collection centre. The main office of the Corporation has a counter that will be open for 24 hours to receive materials required at relief camps. These include drinking water and food materials like rice, dry beans, dry fruits, biscuit, salt, tea powder, sugar, rusk, baby food and coconut. One should avoid sending food like bread and buns that will expire soon. Bedsheets, towels and clothes including lungi, nightie, T-shirts, undergarments and kids' wear can be provided. Old or used clothes will not be accepted. Mats, torch, candles, lighter and sanitary napkins will also be collected. More details will be updated on the Mayor's Facebook page.
KSEB employee drowns
Assistant Engineer of Kerala State Electricity Board, Viyyur office, Baiju, who had to go to Punnayurkulam in Thrissur in the morning to repair an electric tower, drowned to death. The small boat in which he was going to the water logged area had capsized. Baiju, who hails from Vadanappally in Thrissur, was 45 years old. The body has been taken to Kunnamkulam Taluk Hospital for post mortem.
A red warning means extremely heavy rainfall, an orange warning indicates very heavy rainfall and a yellow warning indicates heavy rainfall.