Amaravathi: The 'very severe' cyclonic storm 'Titli' left two persons dead besides causing widespread damage in Srikakulam district Thursday, the State Disaster Management Authority (SDMA) said.

Scores of trees and power poles were uprooted as heavy rains lashed Srikakulam district under the influence of the storm, the SDMA said.

Rainfall ranging from 2 cm to 26 cm was recorded in several mandals of the district even as road communication network was vastly affected.

The State Road Transport Corporation suspended its bus services as uprooted trees caused roadblocks at several places.

Transport Minister K Atchannaidu, who hails from Srikakulam, visited the affected mandals and is monitoring the situation.

Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu conducted a tele-conference with district authorities and instructed them to remain on high alert.

"Every hour from now on is very crucial.Focus should be on relief measures and restoration of communication network.Care should be taken to prevent spread of communicable diseases," Naidu said.

NDRF and SDRF teams have been deployed in Srikakulam and neighbouring Vizianagaram districts to take up rescue and relief operations.

The SDMA has set up a toll-free telephone no. 18004250101 at its Emergency Operations Centre to assist people in distress, while control rooms have been opened in the three north coastal districts.

Electricity Poles Damaged

Cyclone Titli uprooted trees and electric poles and damaged hutments in Odisha's Ganjam and Gajapati districts after making landfall early Thursday morning, but no loss of life was reported from any part of the state, officials said.

The cyclone also triggered heavy rainfall in at least three districts and caused minor damage to power and communication.

"There has been no major damage or report of casualty received from any part of the state so far. Some destruction was reported from Ganjam and Gajapati districts," Special Relief Commissioner (SRC) B P Sethi said.

Power supply and telephone links got disrupted and road communication snapped due to uprooted trees at many places of Gajapati district, the SRC said.

Efforts are on to clear roads blocked by uprooted trees and restore power supply in affected areas at the earliest, he said.

In all, eight districts - Ganjam, Gajapati, Khurda, Puri, Jagatsinghpur, Kendrapara, Bhadrak and Balasore - have been affected by "very severe cyclone Titli", he said.

Cyclone 'Titli' triggered heavy to very heavy rainfall in Ganjam, Gajapati and Puri districts of Odisha, while damage of hutments and asbestos-roofed houses, street lights, road blockade due to uprooted trees were reported from Ganjam.

Road communication between Paralakhemundi and Mohana and some other block headquarters in Gajapati had been disrupted under the impact of the cyclone, he said.

In Ganjam, reports of damage to hutments and other structures and uprooting of trees were received from some areas, he said.

The latest India Meteorological Department (IMD) report said cyclone 'Titli made the landfall between 4.30 and 5.30 am in south-west coast of Gopalpur near Palasa in Andhra Pradesh with an estimated maximum sustained surface wind speed of 140-150 kmph gusting to 165 kmph.

The landfall process has been completed and "the centre of eye of cyclone 'Titli' lies over the land," the IMD said.

The system is now moving northeastwards towards Gangetic West Bengal across Odisha and it will weaken gradually, it said.

An hour after the landfall, Gopalpur in Odisha reported surface wind at 126 kmph, Kalingapatanam in Andhra Pradesh recorded wind speed of 56 kmph.

As cyclone 'Titli' entered the land mass, some districts, including Ganjam, Gajapati and Puri, are receiving good amount of rainfall coupled with high speed wind.

Director of Meteorological (MeT) Centre Bhubaneswar H R Biswas said the "very severe cyclonic storm" (VSCS) is being monitored by the coastal Doppler Weather Radars at Visakhapatnam, Gopalpur and Paradip.

As part of its pre-cyclone preparedness, the Odisha government has evacuated over 3 lakh people living in low-lying areas of the five coastal districts ahead of the landfall.

They were accommodated in 1,112 cyclone shelters.

Altogether, 105 pregnant women in Ganjam district and 18 in Jagatsinghpur have been shifted to hospitals, the SRC said.

He said 13 teams of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and the Orissa Disaster Rapid Action Force (ODRAF) have been deployed at several places along with fire brigade.

3 lakh evacuated in Odisha due to cyclone 'Titli':

Around three lakh people were evacuated in Odisha along the eastern coast as the very severe cyclonic storm 'Titli' made a landfall Thursday morning, the Home Ministry said Thursday.

Eight districts of Odisha -- Ganjam, Khurdha, Puri, Jagatsinghpur, Gajapati Kendrapara, Bhadrak and Balasore -- were hit by the very severe cyclonic storm that caused heavy to very heavy rainfall in large parts of the state, damaging thatched and asbestos houses and street lights.

The cyclone crossed the north Andhra Pradesh-south Odisha coast near Palasa in Srikakulam district to the southwest of Gopalpur with estimated maximum sustained surface wind speed of 140-150 kmph gusting to 165 kmph between 430 hours and 0530 hours, according to a statement issued by the Home Ministry.

Gopalpur recorded 126 kmph wind speed at 0430 hours and the wind speed is likely to gradually decrease due to weakening of the cyclone, the statement said quoting a report by the Odisha government.

As many as 30 district emergency operation centres were asked to track and respond the very severe cyclonic storm effectively, 300 power boats of special relief organisation were kept ready with crew.

Around three lakh people were evacuated and 879 multi-purpose cyclone and flood shelters were kept in readiness for sheltering the rescued people, the statement said.

Altogether 1,112 relief camps were opened for sheltering the evacuees. A total of 105 pregnant women in Ganjam and 18 in Jgatsinghpur were shifted to hospitals, it said.

All schools and colleges will remain closed till Friday. Thirteen teams, comprising 45 personnel each, of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) were deployed in the affected areas.

Several teams of the Odisha Disaster Response Force (ODRF) were deployed in nine districts -- Ganjam, Puri, Jagatsinghpur, Khordha, Cuttack, Balasore, Mayurbhanj, Boudh and Kalahandi, the statement said.

Fire services teams were asked to be on alert to respond at short notice of the district administration, it added.

Also Read:Cyclone ‘Titli’ Crosses Odisha Coast

(PTI)