Rains, landslides kill 24, displace thousands in India's Kerala state

Lester Mason
August 11, 2018

It is the first time in 26 years that the shutter of the Cheruthoni dam of the Idukki reservoir, considered the biggest arch dam in Asia, has been opened. Public going near dams to view opening of shutters, is not advisable. "We will open one shutter of the Idukki dam also".

Drinking water distribution in Kochi, 130km away from Idukki dam, was affected after sludge crept into the water pumping unit in Aluva, officials said. TOI photo The officials said that the release from Idamalayar could be controlled at 3 lakh litres per second. The water level in Idamalayar dam has slipped slightly to 169.32 metres at 5am on Friday from 169.52 at Thursday midnight, which power minister M M Mani said was a good sign. Five shutters of the Cheruthoni dam in Idukki reservoir have been opened as rains show no sign of letting up, which may push up the level of water in Periyar and Cheruthoni rivers and complicate rescue efforts. As the speed increased, officials started cutting down trees along the banks of river Periyar.

As per State Emergency Operations Centre, 22 people have been killed in floods and landslides triggered by torrential rains in several districts.

Speaking to the media here, Vijayan said rains have caused extensive damage to life and properties across the state.

More than 10,000 people have been shifted to 157 relief camps across the state in the last two days, the government said.

The district administration has issued an alert to the public in the wake of water level rising in rivers and streams.

The northern districts of Palakkad and Malappuram and the hilly districts of Wayanad and Idukki were reeling under floods. It has asked tourists not to go to high range areas and dam sites in the state.

Also, at least seven people are reported to be missing due to landslides.

The state of Kerala had seen good Monsoon rains with a few heavy spells on some occasions as well, unlike a year ago when it remained rain deficient.

With water entering in the low lying areas of Pathalam, Ernakulam, Kerala Fire and Rescue Department reached out to rescue people stuck in waist deep water in these areas.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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