Cyclone Vayu live updates: Western Railway cancels 40 trains to coastal Gujarat

A fisherman swims to shore after his boat capsized due to high waves ahead of the expected landfall of Cyclone Vayu at Veraval on June 12, 2019.

A fisherman swims to shore after his boat capsized due to high waves ahead of the expected landfall of Cyclone Vayu at Veraval on June 12, 2019.   | Photo Credit: Reuters

Parts of Gujarat are bracing for impact from strengthening Cyclone Vayu, which is expected to slam into the State on June 13, even as authorities shifted more than 2 lakh people on the coast to safer places. People from low-lying areas of Saurashtra and Kutch regions have been evacuated.

Operations at ports and airports in these regions have been suspended as precautionary measure, officials said. Railways has cancelled 40 trains, and short-terminated 28 others.

Cyclone Vayu, which has turned into a very severe cyclonic storm, is expected hit Gujarat coast anywhere between Veraval in the south and Dwarka in the west in the afternoon of June 13.

Here are the latest updates:

11 pm

 

400 flights affected in Mumbai as cyclone Vayu approaches Gujarat

Air passengers to and from Mumbai had a tough time on June 12 as nearly 400 flights were affected due to bad weather caused by the cycle Vayu which hit the neighbouring Gujarat coast, according to an airport official.

The city airport is one of the busiest in the country handling over 900 aircraft movements daily.

The official said as many as 194 departing flights and 192 arrivals were delayed in the wake of the bad weather due to the cyclone Vayu.

At least two flights were diverted from the city, the official said.

10 pm

Chinese boats provided shelter at Ratnagiri port

India has granted special permission to 10 Chinese boats to enter its waters and dock at Ratnagiri port with Cyclone Vayu expected to make landfall on the western coast on Thursday. The Coast Guard followed protocol and provided shelter to the boats. A Coast Guard official said, Coast Guard Inspector General K.R. Suresh said it is common practice for vessels to seek shelter at ports in nearby countries during a calamity.

Police officials said the boats were brought in under a security cordon. The Maharashtra police, the Maharashtra Maritime Board and the Customs are monitoring the vessels in co-ordination with Indian Coast Guard. Most of the vessels are fishing boats. The District Collectorate said throughout Wednesday huge sea waves lashed Sindhudurg and Ratnagiri districts.

The Maharashtra Maritime Board, which is authorised to issue permission to boat operators and fishing vessels, suspended services on June 12 after the India Meteorological Department issued Signal 3 cautionary advisory. Wind speeds of 40 knots or 70 kmph were reported while waves were above three metres.

The Mumbai Port Trust and the Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust have been directed to send reports every six hours to the Director General of Shipping. “We will be on watch on Thursday before taking a decision on resuming normal operations,” port officials said. — reports Aditya Anand from Mumbai

8.35 pm

 

Western Railway cancels 40 trains to coastal Gujarat

The Western Railway has decided to short-terminate or cancel some of its trains passing through areas of Gujarat that are likely to be affected by cyclone Vayu. All WR passenger and mail trains to Veraval, Okha, Porbandar, Bhavnagar, Bhuj and Gandhidham stations will be short-terminated or cancelled from 6 p.m. on June 12 till June 14 morning, said WR chief spokesperson Ravinder Bhakar.

The WR has decided to cancel operation of 40 mainline trains while 28 similar trains will be short-terminated with partial cancellation as a precautionary measure.

Waves crash against the jetty at a fishing harbour ahead of the expected landfall of Cyclone Vayu at Veraval in Gujarat on June 12, 2019.

Waves crash against the jetty at a fishing harbour ahead of the expected landfall of Cyclone Vayu at Veraval in Gujarat on June 12, 2019.   | Photo Credit: Reuters

 

The WR has also planned to run a special train each from Gandhidham, Bhavnagar Para, Porbandar, Veraval and Okha to evacuate people from those areas.

Special trains with six to 10 coaches each will also be kept ready at the nearest safe location to be moved in emergency conditions, the WR said.

The coaches currently available at depots and station yards located in coastal areas were being shifted to safer places, it said.

“Arrangements have been made for round-the-clock manning of the railway emergency control offices,” it said.

All rail authorities concerned have been instructed to keep adequate manpower, and machinery like JCBs, tree-cutters, water tanks, tractors and generators on standby for any assistance required, the WR said.

8.15 p.m.

 

Signal 9 warning at Saurashtra ports

All ports in Saurashtra have hoisted signal 9, a danger warning, which means the cyclone is now severe or very severe and is expected to move keeping the port to its right.

8.10 p.m.

Flights suspended in Porbandar, Diu, Bhavnagar, Keshod and Kandla

Airports Authority of India (AAI), in a statement, has decided to suspend flight operations at AAI airports in Porbandar, Diu, Bhavnagar, Keshod and Kandla from 12 midnight IST on June 12 to 12 midnight June 13.

"Equipment and heavy machinery has been moved to safety at respective airports and the Airport Directors of AAI’s Bhuj and Jamnagar Airports have been asked to write to the Indian Air Force to suspend operations of civil flights from these two airports also.  A decision in respect of suspending operations at AAI’s Surat Airport will be taken after analysing the weather," the statement read.

7:15 pm

Army, IAF teams on standby

As the very severe cyclonic storm ‘Vayu’ is inching closer to Gujarat coast and expected to make a landfall on June 13, the Army, the Indian Air Force (IAF), and the NDRF teams are deployed and put on standby for rescue and relief operations along the coastal districts.

The Indian Coast Guard (ICG) has also deployed ships and aircraft to enable search and rescue post the landfall of the cyclonic storm.

A total of ten columns of the Army each having a strength of about 70 persons — have been deployed in Jamnagar, Gir, Dwarka, Porbandar, Jamnagar, Somnath, Morbi, Bhavnagar, Rajkot and Amreli, while another 24 columns have been put on standby to carry out rescue and relief operations, a defence release said on June 11.

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6.30 pm

Landfall likely to be delayed

Landfall of cyclone Vayu is expected to be delayed. It’s likely to hit around noon on June 13 between Veraval and Dwarka, according to IMD. Earlier, it was expected to hit the coast early morning on Thursday.

46 NDRF teams, 11 SDRF teams, 13 SRP companies, 11 columns of Army, 2 BSF company, and 300 Marine Commandos have been deployed so far in Gujarat.

6.15 pm

Over 2.15 lakh people shifted

The Gujarat government has said that more than 2.15 lakh people have been shifted to safer places having proper facilities. Evacuation continues.

Fishing boats being evacuated at Veraval Port in Gujarat on Wednesday June 12, 2019, with Cyclone Vayu expected to hit landfall the following day

Fishing boats being evacuated at Veraval Port in Gujarat on Wednesday June 12, 2019, with Cyclone Vayu expected to hit landfall the following day   | Photo Credit: Vijay Soneji

 

5.30 pm

Alert sounded in 10 Gujarat districts

Giant waves crash on the famous Donapaula jetty in Goa, on Wednesday, June 12, 2019. The jetty is now closed for the tourists after being declared unsafe by the government.

Giant waves crash on the famous Donapaula jetty in Goa, on Wednesday, June 12, 2019. The jetty is now closed for the tourists after being declared unsafe by the government.   | Photo Credit: Atish Pomburfekar

 

An alert has been sounded in 10 districts of Gujarat, after Cyclone Vayu was re-classified as 'very severe' and its impact expected to remain strong for 24 hours even after its landfall on Thursday, officials said.

As many as 52 teams of the National Disaster Management Relief Force (NDRF), comprising around 45 rescuers each, have been moved to the State, while 10 columns of the Indian Army have been kept on stand-by.

Warships and aircraft of the Indian Navy have been kept on standby as well.

Meanwhile, Home Secretary Rajiv Gauba chaired a meeting of the National Crisis Management Committee (NCMC) where preparation for relief and rescue operations were discussed threadbare.

The NCMC meeting took stock of the precautionary measures taken by the Gujarat government and Diu UT administration with a view to ensure that no human life is lost, damage to vital infrastructure is minimised and to ensure early recovery of all essential services post-cyclone landfall.

Diving and rescue teams and relief materials have been kept on standby for rendering assistance to civil authorities, as required, another official said.

Medical teams and facilities at Indian Naval hospital in Mumbai are on standby to handle medical emergencies. - PTI

4.00 pm

Special trains

In view of Cyclone Vayu, dirst evacuation special train will run from Okha at 5.45 p.m. today (12/06/19) for Rajkot. The second evacuation special train will run from Okha at 8.05 p.m. today (12/6/19) for Ahmedabad with 21 coaches. - Ajeet Mahale

3.30 pm

NDRF, other agencies working round the clock: PM Modi

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday tweeted saying the Central Government was closely monitoring the situation in Gujarat and other parts of India.

"I have been constantly in touch with State Governments. NDRF and other agencies are working round the clock to provide all possible assistance," he tweeted.

"Praying for the safety and wellbeing of all those affected by Cyclone Vayu. The Government and local agencies are providing real-team information, which I urge those in affected areas to closely follow," he further tweeted.

3.10 pm

Vayu expected to make the landfall tomorrow from 8am-12 am: MHA

The Ministry of Home Affairs on June 12 said that the "severe" cyclonic storm has sturned into "very severe" and that wind speeds are expected to increase to a gusting of 155-170 kmph, becoming deadly.

"Home secretary Rajiv Gauba chaired a meeting of National Crisis Management Committee, Gujarat chief secretary J.N Singh joined through video conferencing," the MHA added.

A fisherman looks at the giant waves lashing the shore at Worli village on Wednesday, June 12, 2019. Cyclone Vayu is set to make landfall on June 13.

A fisherman looks at the giant waves lashing the shore at Worli village on Wednesday, June 12, 2019. Cyclone Vayu is set to make landfall on June 13.   | Photo Credit: Emmanual Yogini

 

The MHA also said that though cyclones generally weaken after landfall, Cyclone Vayu is expected to retain its strength even after 24 hours. " It is expected to make the landfall tomorrow from 8am-12 am," the Ministry said. - Vijaita Singh

3.00 pm

 

Cyclone Vayu is moving northerly at a speed of 18 kmph, the Coast Guard has said, citing the IMD and ISRO model of tracking.

Inspector General Rakesh Pal of the Coast Guard Region (NW) said that the cyclone was around 300 km south of Veraval. - Mahesh Langa

2.30 pm

Odisha offers help to Gujarat

Odisha government has offered all help to Gujarat in the wake of Cyclone Vayu.

Gujarat Chief Secretary J.N. Singh called up his Odisha counterpart A.P. Padhi and sought Odisha’s advice on how to tackle the cyclonic storm on a war-footing, officials said on Wednesday.

“Gujarat chief secretary had called me up and discussed the measures to be taken ahead of the landfall. We have offered all kind of help to Gujarat. However, the Gujarat chief secretary has said that they will seek further help if required keeping in view the situation,” Mr. Padhi told reporters here.

The Gujarat government is in constant touch with Odisha in view of the eastern state’s successful handing of similar calamities like cyclone ‘Fani’ in May this year and cyclone ‘Titli’ last year, officials said.

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1.45 pm

Trains from coastal Gujarat cancelled, short terminated

Western Railways has cancelled and short terminated trains from coastal Gujarat destinations like Veraval, Okha, Porbandar, Bhavnagar, Bhuj and Gandhidham from 6 pm in the evening on June 12 till the morning of June 14 in the wake of Cyclone Vayu.

Bus services to pilgrim and tourist places, civil air connectivity to airports and operations at coastal ports have been suspended in the Saurashtra area, said Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani.

"So far 1.2 lakh people already shifted to safer locations from vulnerable places," he added.

Twelve more NDRF teams are set to be airlifted from INS Rajali (Tamil Nadu) and Patna (Bihar) to Gujarat and Diu before, during and in the aftermath of Cyclone Vayu, he said. This is the first time that a total of 47 teams are arriving, said the Chief Minister. - Mahesh Langa

1.15 pm

Mumbai experiences strong winds

With Cyclone Vayu being 280km away from Mumbai, the city has been experiencing strong winds since early morning on June 12.

Mumbaikars have been advised to stay away from coastal areas.

According to a bulletin issued by India Meteorological Department (IMD) early on the morning of June 12, Cyclone Vayu is about 280km South-west of Mumbai. Wind speeds are expected to be around 70kmph throughout the day on the Maharashtra coast. Mumbaikars have been experiencing strong, gusty winds, and sea conditions were rough along and off Maharashtra coast.

Fishermen have already been advised not to venture into the sea.

“In view of #CycloneVayu heading towards Gujarat coast, Mumbai is likely to experience very windy conditions from afternoon,” the Mumbai police commissioner’s Twitter handle tweeted.

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12.30 pm

Rahul Gandhi urges party workers to help

Congress President Rahul Gandhi on Wednesday prayed for the safety of people in Gujarat ahead of cyclone Vayu and appealed the Congress workers to be ready to help.

“Cyclone Vayu is about to reach Gujarat coast. I appeal to all Gujarat Congress workers to be ready to help in all the areas that come in the way. I pray for the safety and well—being of all the people in the areas affected by the cyclone,” he tweeted. - IANS

12 noon

Wind speeds at 145-155 kmph gusting to 170 kmph

The very severe cyclone Vayu is now 340 kms south of Veraval, the Gujarat Information Department has said.

According to a statement, the cyclone is likely to move nearly northward and cross the Gujarat coast between Porbandar and Mahuva, around Veraval and Diu.

"Wind speeds are at 145-155 kmph gusting to 170 kmph around morning on June 13, 2019," the statement said.

11.40 am

Evacuation begins

State authorities have begun evacuation of people from low lying or vulnerable areas in the coastal districts.

Around 3 lakh people from Gujarat and the Union Territory of Diu will be shifted to the more than 700 shelters set up by the authorities.

“Evacuation of people from low lying/vulnerable areas in the coastal areas of Saurashtra and Kutch to safe shelters is going on since early morning. Urging people to cooperate with administration,” said Pankaj Kumar, Additional Chief Secretary (Revenue) in Gujarat.

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11.30 am

Airports to remain shut

Gujarat's Rajkot, Porbandar and Bhuj airports will remain shut on Wednesday, June 12.

“No flights have landed at the airport since 9.50 p.m.,” a Mumbai International Airport Pvt. Ltd. spokesperson said on June 10. A United Air flight from Newark scheduled to land in Mumbai was diverted to Delhi.

All other incoming flights were put on a holding pattern and were circling Mumbai. Landings resumed at 10.45 p.m. with an Indigo flight from Hyderabad being the first to touch down. A Thai Airways flight hit a guard light and sign board, while vacating the runway. The runway remained closed for clearing of debris, adding to the delays.

As per the information received from ATC, 22 flights (six international and 16 domestic) were diverted to Delhi, Hyderabad and Ahmedabad airports on June 10.

11.15 am

Vayu brings temperatures down

There was heavy rain accompanied by thundershowers and lightning in Andheri, Malad, Thane, Mulund, Navi Mumbai, Borivali, Kandivali, Sion, Kurla, Vikhroli, Ghatkopar and Dadar on June 11.

The eastern and western suburbs, especially, reported heavy rainfall between 10pm and 11pm. Malvani recorded 50 mm of rainfall, followed by Malad (44), Kandivali (49), Andheri (West) (41), Goregaon (37) and Mulund (31).

11.00 am

 

Fishermen pull their boats out of the sea at Worli village on Wednesday, June 12, 2019. Cyclone Vayu is set to make landfall on June 13.

Fishermen pull their boats out of the sea at Worli village on Wednesday, June 12, 2019. Cyclone Vayu is set to make landfall on June 13.   | Photo Credit: Emmanual Yogini

 

 

10.30 am

Speed at 17 km per hour

The IMD has said the speed of “Vayu” had increased to 17 km per hour and was located in the Arabian Sea, about 350 km west-northwest of Goa, 410 km south-southwest of Mumbai and 530 km nearly south of Veraval (Gujarat).

“It is very likely to move nearly northwards and cross Gujarat coast between Porbandar and Mahuva around Veraval and the Diu region as a severe cyclonic storm, with a wind speed of 110-120 kmph gusting to 135 kmph during early morning of June 13,” the IMD said.

The cyclone will make a landfall near Veraval in Gir Somnath district on June 13 but it will be preceded by heavy rainfall in isolated places.

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10.00 am

Schools, colleges and anganwadis in coastal districts to remain shut

“June 13 and 14 are crucial for us. We have roped in the Army, the NDRF, the Coast Guard and other agencies for rescue and relief work. We will start shifting people living in coastal areas to safer locations,” Chief Minister Vijay Rupani told media persons on Tuesday.

After a review meet with District Collectors and officials, Additional Chief Secretary (Revenue) Pankaj Kumar said schools, colleges and anganwadis in coastal districts would remain shut on June 12 and 13.

“In all, 36 NDRF teams will be deployed for rescue operations. We have also roped in Army, Navy, Coast Guard and BSF units. If needed, we will also take the help of the Air Force. We have ordered schools, colleges and anganwadis in the districts which are likely to be hit by the cyclone to remain shut on June 12 and 13,” Mr. Kumar said.

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Printable version | Sep 24, 2020 8:13:51 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/cyclone-vayu-live-updates-june-12-2019/article27828339.ece

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