Nivar is the second cyclone in the Bay of Bengal this year. In May, Cyclone Amphan had developed into a 'super cyclonic storm', killing around 110.
Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Karnataka have been put on high alert, with NDRF teams on standby. It is likely to intensify into a severe cyclonic storm during next 12 hours and into a very severe cyclonic storm in the subsequent 12 hours.
The storm, 250 km off Chennai and 190 km and 180 km from Puducherry and Cuddalore respectively, is very likely to move northwestwards and cross coasts as a "very severe cyclonic storm with a wind speed of 120-130 kmph gusting to 145 kmph."
Chennai and its suburbs, which received heavy overnight rains, continued to witness intermittent showers coupled with strong winds with low-lying areas getting inundated and water entering houses in such localities.
Chief Minister K Palaniswami has declared Thursday a public holiday for 13 districts including Chennai, Vellore, Cuddalore, Villupuram, Nagapattinam, Tiruvarur, Chengelpet and Kancheepuram considering the safety of people in view of the cyclone.
A total of 200 relief camps have been established in the whole of Puducherry region with basic amenities, including food.
Here's the latest:
— The likely path of cyclone Nivar
Nivar is expected to cross the Tamil Nadu-Puducherry coasts between Karaikal and Mamallapuram as a very severe cyclonic storm on late today evening, Met Department said.
— Things to watch out for
It would be a very severe cyclonic storm with wind speeds of 120-130 kmph gusting to 145 kmph, IMD said. Rainfall is expected to inundate the region, with some areas bracing for very heavy downpours.
— Advisory for coastal areas
Tamil Nadu had declared a statewide public holiday today. Fishermen were advised not to venture into the sea, while people in coastal areas were evacuated to shelter houses.
— Flight services disrupted
Flights to or from the southern region, mainly Chennai, have been disrupted, IndiGo said.
"A total of 49 flights that were scheduled for today have been cancelled. We will monitor the situation and decide on the further course of action for November 26. We are accommodating passengers on next available flights at no additional charges, waiving off cancellation fee and the refunding full ticket amount," the airline said in a statement.
— How TN, Andhra and Puducherry are preparing to tackle the treat
The chief of the NDRF said so far 30 teams of the force have been deployed in the three states, while 20 more teams have been kept on standby for immediate deployment.
A team of NDRF comprises of about 40 personnel.
15 Indian Coast Guard Disaster Relief Teams are ready for deployment at Chennai, Puducherry, Karaikal and Mandapam.
— Do's and Don'ts
People living along the coastal areas have been asked to stay calm, ignore rumours, keep mobile phones charged, listen to radio, not to enter damaged buildings, leave home for safer places if current house is not secured and switch off the main power connection, among others.
— The damage expected as of now
The cyclone will be intense enough to damage crops, plantations, trees, mud houses and communication and electric poles, a latest IMD statement said.
— What category will the hurricane be
Nivar will likely strengthen to become equivalent to a category 2 hurricane before striking India on Wednesday night, Jason Nicholls, a senior meteorologist with AccuWeather said in a Twitter post.
— Partial flooding likely in Chennai
The public works department on Wednesday noon started to release water from the Chembarambakkam reservoir at the rate of 1,000 cusecs (cubic feet per second) as Chennai and surrounding areas received heavy rain.
India's southeastern coast braces for powerful cyclone Nivar
Preparations for the worst
Banning local public gatherings and closing shops, India is bracing for a powerful cyclone that is barrelling towards the southeastern coast. More than a thousand rescue personnel have been mobilised as the cyclone is set to bring heavy rains and wind. Cyclone Nivar will cross the coasts of Tamil Nadu and Puducherry, officials said and parts of Andhra Pradesh is also set to be hit.
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