Coastal areas in Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu has been put on high alert as the deep depression in Bay of Bengal turned into a cyclonic storm heading to the coastal areas. Under the influence of cyclone Phethai, rains have started lashing isolated places in East Godavari, West Godavari and Krishna districts. At other places, overcast sky conditions were witnessed.
India Meteorological Department in its latest cyclone bulletin said at 8 AM on Sunday, the cyclone lay centered at about 600 km south-southeast of Kakinada and was moving at the speed of 16 kmph. It is very likely to intensify further into a Severe Cyclonic Storm during next 24 Hours.
It is very likely to move north-northwestwards and cross Andhra Pradesh coast between Machilipatnam and Kakinada on December 17 afternoon. However, due to unfavourable environmental conditions, it is likely to weaken slightly before landfall and cross coast as a cyclonic storm, met department officials said.
Higher officials and district collectors are closely monitoring the department and are coordinating with special officers deployed at coastal villages. RTGS is disseminating information regarding cyclone movement to people in coastal areas on hourly basis.
Met department officials alerted Andhra Pradesh government about the likely damage in East Godavari, West Godavari, Krishna, Prakasam, Guntur, and Visakhapatnam. According to them, thatched huts, power and communication lines, uprooting of trees, damage to roads, damage to paddy and horticulture crops is likely. Further, low lying areas near the sea are likely to get inundated.
NDRF, SDRF, fire service personnel, Navy, Coast Guard are on standby. Control rooms have been opened at all the district headquarters and at RTGS state headquarters.