Cyclone Michaung: Five killed in Chennai amid heavy rain; airfield closed till 9 am tomorrow

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CHENNAI: As many as five people have been killed in separate incidents in Tamil Nadu’s Chennai amid heavy rain due to cyclone Michaung, according to an official statement by the Chennai police. One person has been injured due to the falling of a tree, according to the police.

Meanwhile, the Chennai airfield is to remain closed until 9 am tomorrow. “Airfield closed for arrival and departure operations till 0900 hrs IST tomorrow due to adverse weather conditions”, said the Chennai airport authority in a post on ‘X’.

Subways have been closed due to the severe waterlogging in Chennai. Also, traffic has been closed from Manjambakkam to Vadaperumbakkam Road due to the release of water from Puzhal Lake, said the police. “DDRT Teams are available in all vulnerable areas and they are working in coordination with the GCC and Highways Department,” it added.

Cyclonic storm ‘Michaung’ intensified to a severe cyclonic storm at 8.30 am today, about 90 km east-northeast of Chennai. The Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) has warned of heavy to very heavy rainfall on December 4 and 5 in north-coastal Tamil Nadu and Puducherry. Light to moderate rainfall at most places and heavy to very heavy rainfall at a few places, with extremely heavy falls at isolated places over coastal Andhra Pradesh and Yanam, is expected on December 4 and 5.

Public life is severely affected in Chennai due to heavy rains lashing several parts of the city. Several areas, including Wallajah Road, Mount Road, Anna Salai, Chepauk, outside Omandurar government multispecialty hospital and other low-lying areas, were left inundated due to the persistent heavy rainfall.

Chennai’s popular Marina Beach was flooded due to heavy downpours, and the roads from Mount Road to Marina Beach were blocked due to severe waterlogging.

The Tamil Nadu government has declared a public holiday in Chennai, Chengalpattu, Kancheepuram and Tiruvallur districts on Tuesday, given the cyclone. The public holiday has been declared under the Negotiable Instruments Act of 1881.

All schools, colleges, educational institutions, and government offices, including the offices of public undertakings and corporations, boards, banks, and financial institutions in the four districts of Chennai, Tiruvallur, Kancheepuram and Chengalpattu, will be closed due to the harsh weather conditions in the state.

However, all essential services, such as police, fire service, local bodies, milk supply, water supply, hospitals and medical shops, power supply, transport, fuel outlets, hotels and restaurants, etc., and the offices engaged in disaster response, relief and rescue activities, shall function as usual.

The Tamil Nadu government has asked people to take precautionary measures as the Indian Meteorological Department has issued a red alert in the state. The IMD has predicted heavy to very heavy rainfall in Chennai and neighbouring areas.

Meanwhile, the cyclone is likely to intensify further and make landfall between Nellore and Machilipatnam in Andhra Pradesh by tomorrow morning, according to the Indian Meteorological Department.

“SCS MICHAUNG over WC & adj SW BoB lay centered about 100km NE of Chennai and 120km SE of Nellore at 1430 IST today. To intensify gradually and move nearly northwards and cross south AP coast between Nellore and Machilipatnam close to Bapatla during forenoon of 5 Dec as SCS”, said the weather department in a post on ‘X’. (ANI)

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