Cyclone Vardah awaiting landfall, evacuation on

"The plant is in touch with the India Meteorological Department", the National Disaster Management Authority said in a statement.

As strong winds and heavy rainfall lash Chennai on 12 December, Indian Railways spokesperson Anil Kumar Saxena said that the Chennai Suburban Railway Network has been suspended till further notice following the landfall of Cyclone Vardah.

Operations at Chennai airport were suspended for the entire night, with almost 170 services being disrupted through the day even as 10 flights were cancelled.

Prior to the storm's landing, Chennai already was pounded with heavy rain and winds. Teams will be deployed with adequate equipment like power saws and transportation for removing fallen trees and restoring traffic.

Not only uprooting of trees, the winds brought down overhead cables and electricity poles.

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According to the Cyclone Warning Division of the India Meteorological Department (IMD), Vardah, which is now, a very severe cyclonic storm, will weaken, but only to a severe cyclonic storm which would cross between Tamilnadu and Nellore in Andhra Pradesh. By the time it makes a landfall, its wind speed is expected to be 100-110 kmph with winds gusting up to 120 kmph. 8000 people have been taken to 54 relief centres in Tamil Nadu.

The Met department has predicted rainfall over south coastal Andhra Pradesh, north coastal Tamil Nadu and Puducherry over the next 36 hours (till Wednesday).

It has told the private sector to allow their workers to avail a holiday or work from home. Tada, Sullurpeta, Naidupeta and other parts of Nellore districts were also receiving heavy rains.

During the telephonic conversations, the Chief Ministers - O Panneerselvam (Tamil Nadu) and N Chandrababu Nadu (Andhra Pradesh) apprised the Home Minister of the damage caused by the cyclone and steps taken for the rescue and relief operations. All educational institutions in Chennai, Kanchipuram and Thiruvallur districts will remained closed on Tuesday.

  • Marjorie Miles