Heavy rains wreak havoc in coastal Andhra

Monday, November 1, 2010

HYDERABAD - Heavy rains wreaked havoc in coastal Andhra Pradesh, inundating several villages and towns and causing massive damage to standing crops, officials said Monday.

Incessant rains under the influence of a trough of low pressure in Bay of Bengal and vigorous northeast monsoon have inundated several residential localities in the coastal city of Visakhapatnam and dozens of villages in East Godavari, West Godavari, Visakhapatnam, Krishna and Nellore districts.

Water entered into several low-lying areas in Kakinada, Amlapuram, Rajahmundry, Eluru, Machilipatnam and Nellore towns. About 500 families were evacuated to safe places in Visakhapatnam city.

Rains over the last three days have thrown normal life out of gear, damaged tanks, houses and roads, uprooted trees, electricity and communication towers and caused extensive damage to paddy and cotton crops in the fertile coastal region.

Standing crops were inundated over thousands of acres. In Vijayanagaram district of north coastal Andhra region, crops over 20,000 acres were damaged. State Agriculture Minister Raghuveera Reddy said the crop losses were being toted.

Strong gales with a speed of 45 to 50 km per hour were blowing through the coast. As the sea is expected to remain rough, the meteorological office has warned fishermen against venturing into sea.

The weather office has forecast moderate to heavy rains in north coastal Andhra and Krishna district till Tuesday as the trough of low pressure remained stationary in the Bay of Bengal. The south coastal region, however, is likely to get some respite. Rains are also forecast at a few places in Rayalseema and coastal Andhra.

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