10 rain-related deaths reported in the district

After being battered for two days, the district is slowly limping back to normal following a respite from rain on Monday. Though the water receded and traffic on the National Highway and rail track was restored towards Vijayawada, Narsipatnam remained cut off from the main route, both from Visakhapatnam and Tuni, and the way to Visakha Agency beyond Chodavaram is yet to be restored.

Some villages are still marooned. Damage to the crops was heavy and yet to be assessed.

Ten deaths were reported, including of two unidentified persons, believed to be travelling in a bus near Dharmavaram. Residents of Payakaraopeta were now left with the task of clearing the slush that entered their houses enveloping every piece of furniture, gadgets and utensils.

The situation at Elamanchili was slightly better.

There were complaints of power not being restored and lack of drinking water in the affected areas. Some consolation was restoration of communication system. Passengers on stranded buses and trains and people living in the marooned towns and villages and their relatives outside had a tension-filled day on Sunday as landlines or mobiles and internet were totally down.

People were dissatisfied with the way the Government had responded to the situation.

In the absence of gale winds, which would have caused damage to life and property, the Government officials reportedly were a little relaxed and did not take the relief works seriously.

Road link to Narsipatnam was cut off after a culvert near Boddepalli on the outskirts was washed away, cutting it off from Visakhapatnam, Elamanchili and Chodavaram. It would take at least two days to restore the link. One has to take a circuitous route, via Dhanasagaram and Joginathapalem to reach Narsipatnam.

An overflowing gedda near Gannavaram Metta cut off traffic from Tuni. Reports said a bridge near Panduru in Kotavuratla mandal was washed away cutting off many villages.

DL Puram and Penugollu Dharmavaram were still waterlogged and a breach to the Sarada at Dimili in Rambilli mandal inundated villages and fields.

The three roads from Chodavaram to Agency area were cut off either due to causeways getting washed away or bridges coming under water. Private jeeps were taking the risk of going to Paderu via Cheedikada. Water was yet to recede in Butchiahpeta and Vaddadi.

With river Sarada calming down a bit, people of Anakapalle heaved a sigh of relief. However, water was yet to recede in Munagapaka area and Ganaparthy still remained cut off.

Meanwhile, district Collector V Seshadri said floodwater started receding and the damage to the roads and bridges would be assessed and repairs taken up.

The rainfall was much higher than the normal and brought havoc. Fifty-two villages in 20 mandals were inundated. For the first five days of the month, the normal rain fall is 14.5 mm and 87.3 mm for the month but the district received 320.4 mm. The annual normal rainfall is 1202.2 mm and the normal rainfall from June 1 to Nov. 5 is 932.3 mm but the actual rainfall received was 1204 mm, the first few days of November accounting for a substantial part of it.

Crops in 37,839 hectares were damaged according to the preliminary report, with paddy, accounting for 29,126 hectares. Damage to crop was not reported from Pedabayalu, Munchingput and G. Madugula in the Agency area and the urban mandals of Visakhapatnam, Pedagantyada and Chinagadili (Visakhapatnam rural). Twenty-seven cattle and 37 sheep, worth more than Rs. 3 lakh were lost and fodder worth Rs. 2.60 crore in an area of 25,900 hectares was damaged. Several rural water supply schemes were damaged and fisheries recorded a loss of Rs.76 lakh.

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