Red alert at Kerala's Idukki reservoir, floods feared in Kochi


80 mm rainfall so far. By 2:15 pm today, all five shutters of the Idukki dam have been opened. The dam is almost 96% full, and is discharging 3 Lakh liters per second waters to the downstream as of Friday 11.30pm.

"Despite that opening, there has been a steady inflow and now the water level in the dam stands at 2,401 metres".

All four shutters of the Idamalayar dam were also opened.

With the shutters lifted, water in Periyar, the second largest river in the state, rose to risky levels. According to reports, 22 more dams have been opened due to increasing water levels.

The State Disaster Management Authority issued a red alert for eight districts following a heavy rainfall warning by the weather office. Past year 1,200 people perished. Gates of 24 dams in the state have been opened so far due to rising water level. Officials began evacuation of families as swollen rivers breached banks and floodwaters surged through houses. Around 2000 residents were moved to relief camps.

According to KSEB officers, the Idukki dam is receiving an inflow of 455 cumecs on Friday morning, while the outflow is only 125 cumecs.

Currently, Monsoon surge is active over the state of Kerala as a cyclonic circulation is seen over Southeast Arabian Sea and adjoining Lakshadweep area in the mid-levels. Hence the decision to release more water was taken. The water is flowing 3 feet below the Cheruthoni bridge.

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"The flood has caused large-scale damage across the state". Similarly, Kollam, Palakkad, Thiruvananthapuram and Wayanad districts received more than seven times their normal rain.

Several tourists were barred from entering the hilly Idukki district after roads caved in at many places.

The government has asked tourists not to go to high range areas and dam sites.

Talking to reporters here after a review meeting, the chief minister said the flood situation was "very grim" and it was for the first time in the history of the state that 24 dams have been opened at a time following the water level reaching their respective maximum.

Chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan has cancelled all official events and is monitoring the floods situation. Earlier, the United States had issued an advisory, asking its citizens not to visit Kerala because of the flash floods. Offered all possible assistance to those affected. "We stand shoulder to shoulder with the people of Kerala in the wake of this calamity", Modi tweeted.

The Army pushed its men and machinery into disaster relief and rescue operations at Kannur, Kozhikode, Wayanad and Idukki after incessant rain and landslides hit various northern districts of the state.