Cyclone Vardah set for landfall near Chennai

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Chennai: Chennai and its suburbs continue to receive rains since Sunday night with severe cyclonic storm set to cross close to the coast here on Monday afternoon, said weather department.

According to the meteorological department, the cyclonic storm Vardah over Bay of Bengal moved further at a speed of around 13 kmph.

It lay centred over west-central and adjoining southwest Bay of Bengal about 150 km east-northeast of Chennai and 290 km east-southeast of Nellore in Andhra Pradesh, the weather department said.

“The system is very likely to move nearly westwards and cross north Tamil Nadu and south Andhra Pradesh coasts, close to Chennai with a wind speed of 100-110 kmph gusting to 120 kmph by Monday afternoon,” a bulletin issued by meteorological department said.

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

The rainfall intensity would increase gradually becoming heavy to very heavy rainfall (7-19 cm) at a few places and isolated extremely heavy rainfall (less than equal to 20 cm) over Chennai, Thiruvallur and Kanchipuram districts of Tamil Nadu and Nellore and Prakasam districts of Andhra Pradesh on December 12.

The weather department has warned of squally winds speed reaching 50-60 kmph gusting to 70 kmph along and off Andhra Pradesh and adjoining north Tamil Nadu coasts becoming 100-110 kmph gusting to 120 kmph during the time of landfall along and off Chennai, Thiruvallur and Kanchipuram districts of Tamil Nadu and Nellore and Prakasam districts of Andhra Pradesh.

The tidal wave of about one metre height above the astronomical tide is very likely to inundate the low lying areas of Chennai, Thiruvallur and Kanchipuram districts of Tamil Nadu and Nellore districts of Andhra Pradesh during the time of landfall.

Meanwhile, the Tamil Nadu government has taken necessary steps and precautions to meet the situation that may arise due to the cyclone.

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam on Sunday reviewed the preparedness with ministers and officials.

District administrations and all field officers were put on high alert.

Similarly Army, Navy, Air-force and Coast Guard were also geared up to lend a helping hand when required.

The government declared a holiday for all government, government-aided private schools, colleges and other educational institutions in Chennai, Kanchipuram, Thiruvallur districts.

The Tamil Nadu government has also advised private sector organisations to allow their workers to avail holiday or work from home.

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