Cyclone ‘Titli’ leaves 8 dead in Andhra
Causes widespread damage across Odisha
Cyclone ‘Titli’ made landfall on the eastern coast of the country early on Thursday claiming eight lives and wrecking havoc in Srikakulam and Vizianagaram districts of Andhra Pradesh, while causing widespread damage in neighbouring Odisha.
While no loss of lives was reported in Odisha, the “very severe” cyclonic storm left a trail of destruction in Gajapati and Ganjam districts of the state, uprooting trees, electric poles and damaging hutments.
According to the India Meteorological Department (IMD), Cyclone Titli made its landfall near Palasa in Srikakulam district, south-west of Gopalpur in Odisha with an estimated maximum sustained surface wind speed of 140-150 kmph gusting to 165 kmph between 4.30 am and 5.30 am.
The Andhra Pradesh State Disaster Management Authority (SDMA) said the cyclone caused widespread damage in Srikakulam and Vizianagaram and threw normal life out of gear as heavy to very heavy rains lashed the two north coastal districts since late Wednesday night.
While a 62-year-old woman died at Gudivada Agraharam village after a tree fell on her, a 55-year-old man died in a house collapse at Rotanasa village in Srikakulam district, the SDMA said.
The Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister’s Office (CMO) said the six others killed were fishermen who had ventured into the sea.
The road network in Srikakulam district suffered extensive damage, while the power distribution network was also severely affected. Strong winds uprooted more than 2,000 electric poles.
In Odisha, Cyclone Titli led to very heavy rainfall in Ganjam, Gajapati and Puri districts and caused minor damage to power supply and communication.
In all, eight districts - Ganjam, Gajapati, Khurda, Puri, Jagatsinghpur, Kendrapara, Bhadrak and Balasore - have been affected by the cyclonic storm, Special Relief Commissioner B P Sethi said.
“There has been no major destruction or report of a casualty from any part of the state so far. Some damages like uprooting of trees and electric poles and damage to hutments were reported from Ganjam and Gajapati districts,” he said.
Power supply and telephone links got disrupted, and road communication snapped due to uprooted trees at many places in Gajapati district, Sethi said, adding efforts are now on to clear the blocked roads and to restore power supply in affected areas.
Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik reviewed the situation in the state and instructed officials to expedite restoration efforts once the situation improves. He also directed the officials concerned to provide relief materials to cyclone-affected people.
Fishermen engaged in their work as Cyclone Titli hits the coast starting with surface wind effect reaching speeds of 126 kmph at Gopalpur, in Ganjam, Thursday