A red alert has been sounded in the high range Idukki district in Kerala by the IMD on Wednesday with widespread extremely heavy rains predicted, as parts of the state received heavy showers inundating low lying areas and partially disrupting rail traffic.
Red alert indicates that there are chances of receiving over 20.5 cm rain within the next 24 hours in various parts of Idukki. Orange alert, indicating heavy to very heavyrains, has been issued for Kottayam, Ernakulam, Thrissur and Palakkad districts for Wednesday.
The Kerala Disaster management authority said with the extremely heavy rains predicted there are chances of landslides, earth slips, floods and other natural disasters and has asked the people to be extremely cautious.
The South West Monsoon had set in over Kerala on June one this year,marking the commencement of the four-month long rainfall season. Several parts of the state have been receiving heavy rains, particularly Ernakulam and Kottayam districts since last night.
The busy Jos junction, MG road, Panampilly nagar, Palarivattom and other mainroads in Kochi are all waterlogged. Water entered over 80 homes in the city.
The Kerala State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) bus terminus in the city was also inundated. The rain fury was also severe in Kochi's neighbouring Kottayam district with landslides affecting train services between Kottayam and Chingavanam.
Earth and boulders fell onto the railway track this morning affecting train services between Kottayam and Ernakulam stations, railway sources said.
The 06301 Venad special train from Thiruvananthapuram has been terminated at Changanassery station and the pairing train (06302) from Ernakulam will start from Changanassery, the sources told PTI.
The Thiruvananthapuram-Kannur Jan Shatabdi express via Kottayam has been diverted via Alappuzha. According to the weather report at 0830 hrs this morning, rains recorded in various places in cm are Kottayam 20, Vaikom 19, Chertala 18, Ernakulam South 13, Kochi airport 15.42, and Thiruvananthapuram city 4.82.
With wind speed reaching 40-50 kmph likely to prevail along and off Kerala coast, fishermen have been asked not to put out to sea. Meanwhile, one fisherman was rescued after 14 hours and search is continuing for another after the two went missing since last evening from Tirur in Malappuram.
Kerala had been devastated by the worst floods in the last 100 years during August 2018 that claimed over 400 lives and razed several houses, while last year the state's northern parts were flooded again in August as heavy rains and widespread landslides wreaked havoc, leaving over 120 dead.
A large number of people including women and children had lost lives at Kavalapara in Malappuram and Puthumala in Wayanad alone when the massive landslides rocked the places.