Cyclone damages homes, kills 11 in southern India

November 16, 2018 | By | Reply More

A cyclone hit the coast of southern India on Friday, killing at least 11 people, damaging homes and forcing the evacuation of more than 80,000 residents.

cycloneCyclone Gaja blew ashore in Tamil Nadu state with heavy rains and winds of 90 kilometers (55 miles) per hour, said Narendra Kumar, a National Disaster Response Force official. The storm weakened after coming onshore.

People living in low-lying areas had been taken to more than 470 relief centers in six districts, and fishermen were warned to stay away from the sea.

The state’s top elected official, K. Palaniswami, told reporters the storm had killed 11 people in the state.

Initial reports indicate the deaths were caused by wall collapses and electrocution, said NDRF official Umesh, who uses one name.

The storm felled trees and power lines, and authorities preventively disconnected the electricity supply to the worst-hit areas to avoid electrocutions. Schools were closed in places, and vehicles remained off the roads in most parts of Nagapattinam and Karaikal districts.

Heavy rains damaged rice fields and roads, and strong winds uprooted banana and papaya trees along the coastline.

Tamil Nadu state is prone to cyclones that develop in the Bay of Bengal. In 1999, a cyclone killed more than 15,000 people in eastern Orissa.

Press journalist for HRO media – Ignacio Damigo reports.

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