Odishatv Bureau

Sambalpur: With the water level in its reservoir increasing due to rains in the upper reaches of Mahanadi, the Hirakud dam released this season’s first flood water on Friday.

In the first phase, the dam authority released the excess water through number 7 sluice gate.

According to sources, 10 sluice gates of the dam will be opened in phases between 10 am to 12.30 pm today to release excess water.

The dam authorities is following the standard operating procedure to release the flood water, the sources added.

The administrations in 12 districts - Sambalpur, Bargarh, Sonepur, Angul, Boudh, Nayagarh, Cuttack, Phulbani, Khurda, Jagatsinghpur and Puri - have been asked to stay alert.

Water Resources secretary PK Jena has assured the people living on the banks of the river there is no threat of flood due to the release of water from Hirakud today. He has, however, advised people to be on alert and not let their cattle get close to the river as the water level is set to rise.