Alert sounded in coastal areas of TN, Kerala

Last Updated: Sunday, May 9, 2010 - 21:57

Chennai/Thiruvananthapuram: An alert was
sounded in coastal areas of Tamil Nadu and Kerala, with
authorities asked to remain vigilant after a powerful
earthquake struck an Indonesian province, setting off fears of
a Tsunami.

Fishermen were advised not to venture into the sea and
people living close to the shore asked to move to safer places
in Tamil Nadu, where however, the alert was withdrawn in the
evening, police and officials said.

As the quake of 7.2 magnitude hit Aceh province in
Indonesia at 12.59 PM (local time), authorities in both states
were on alert after the Centre advised states concerned to
take precautionary steps.

Marina beach in Chennai was declared out of bounds for
public and traffic on roads leading to it was diverted. Later
in the evening, traffic resumed.

Fishermen in Nagapattinam district, devastated by the
December 2004 tsunami,claiming over 6000 lives, were asked not
to put out to sea and to move away from the shores.

Fire services, revenue and police departments were also
put on alert, District Collector C Munianathan said.

In coastal Kanyakumari town, tourists were evacuated from
the beach and Vivekananda Rock Memorial, which is in the sea.

In Kerala, those living close to the sea in parts of
Alappuzha district were asked to move to safer places as heavy
sea erosion was reported from some places, official sources
said.

Vulnerable coastal hamlets for which special precautions
were being taken included Thrikkunnappuzha, Cherthala and
Arthunkal, which were hit by the 2004 Tsunami.

"For time being, the people have been asked to move on
their own to safer places like nearby school buildings or
homes of relatives. If necessary, official arrangements would
be made for their evacuation", sources said.

State Fisheries Minister S Sarma asked the coastal
people, especially fisherfolk,to remain vigilant and not to
venture into the sea.

Warning has been issued by district administrations in
Kollam, Thrissur and Kannur also.

Meanwhile, people of coastal village of Kadakkarapally in
Alppuzha district said water levels in wells in the area have
been rising.

Also, strong waves lashed coastal hamlets near Harippad
town in the district with water surging into houses of fisher
folk, police said.

Many parts of Kerala also received rains in the afternoon
followed by gusty winds in some places.

PTI



First Published: Sunday, May 9, 2010 - 21:57

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