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Cyclone Gaja: the aftermath

Trail of destruction in Sivaganga

November 17, 2018 08:13 am | Updated 08:14 am IST - Sivaganga

A fallen electric post at Thilagar Nagar in Karaikudi on Friday.

A fallen electric post at Thilagar Nagar in Karaikudi on Friday.

Cyclone Gaja claimed two lives and left a trail of destruction in the district, uprooting hundreds of trees and electric poles as incessant rains, accompanied by gusty winds lashed several parts of the district right from the early hours of Friday after the cyclone crossed the coast near Nagapattinam.

After the cyclone made landfall, the district witnessed incessant rains and winds at a speed of more than 80 km per hour throwing normal life out of gear. Karaikudi, Sakkottai, Pudumadam, Puduvayal, S Pudur and Nerkuppaipatti bore the brunt of the rain fury.

Officials said two people died in rain related incidents in the district. While P. Muthu Murugan, 56, Road Inspector in Highways department died in wall collapse, Rani Elizabeth, 35, a sanitary worker died when a tree fell on her at Nerkuppai, near Tirupattur. Two cows and six goats also perished in the rain, they said.

Collector J. Jayakanthan said squally winds brought down 378 electric poles in various parts of the district and more than 60 trees on the highways. Spare electric poles were available in the district and efforts were being taken on a war footing to restore power supply in the affected areas at the earliest, he said. Some houses were also damaged and extent of damage was being assessed, the Collector said.

The Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Corporation employees were working overtime to erect poles and restore power supply, he added.

Traffic was hit for few hours in the morning on the Karaikudi – Madurai road and it was restored after police and fire and rescue services personnel removed the fallen trees. Besides, about 500 avenue trees had fallen in residential areas, officials said. The cyclone also destroyed banana and papaya crops in about 20 hectares in the district, officials said.

It came as a rude shock to the farmers as the crops were in fruit bearing stage, they said.

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