Cyclone Phethai throws life out of gear in city

Educational institutions, commercial establishments remain closed; several roads inundated; patrolling intensified along the beaches

Cyclone Phethai threw the normal life in the city out of gear on Monday. Though the cyclone made a landfall at Katrenikona of East Godavari district, some 200 km away from the city, on Monday afternoon, Vizagites remained indoors, recollecting the horrific devastation the Hudhud Cyclone had done in 2014 and praying for the peaceful passover of Phethai.

The city experienced high gale and continuous rainfall from early in the morning, brining the life to a standstill. However, no causality and untoward incidents were reported.

Due to uninterrupted rain from the early hours, drains in several colonies in I-Town, Akkayyapalem, Gajuwaka, MVP Colony, Arilova, Peda Gantayada and others sweeled up on to the roads. Not just interior bylanes, several parts of the NH-16 and Beach Road stretch were inundated by the afternoon. Bad roads in a many colonies of I-Town made it tough for vehicles to move on the roads.

Gale accompanied with rain turned out to be a nightmare for people living along the hill slopes at Hanumanthuwaka, Arilova, Gajuwaka, Kancharapalem, with the apprehensions about landslides. Power supply was also interrupted in many areas since Sunday night.

Bandh-like situation

The Port City wore a deserted look with most of the offices, commercial establishments, shops, cinema theatres, shopping malls and tourist spots remaining closed for the day.

The district administration declared a holiday for all educational institutions on Monday. The roads were almost empty with a few auto-rickshaws and RTC buses plying.

The otherwise busy Poorna Market and lanes of I-Town wore a deserted look as only onlu a few shops remained open. Even the online cabs stayed off the roads. However, they resumed operation only in the evening after the rain and wind subsided.

Eateries down shutters

With most of the restaurants, online food delivery services remained closed, those dependant on them had a tough time. Citizens faced troubles as on the roadside small eateries downed their shutters.

“No online food delivery boys were ready to deliver parcels. Even the small road side eateries, pan shops, supermarkets, stores remained closed. We had scout for almost an hour to find a eatery for breakfast,” said M. Siddharth, a private firm employee from Madhavadhara.

Beaches remain out of bounds

With the sea remaining rough, the police intensified patrolling all along the city coast to ensure that the public do not venture close to the turbulent water. High tide condition prevailed through out the day. Patrolling teams moved along the stretch between Bheemili and Tenneti Park stretch, while barricades were put up on the Beach Road between Park Hotel Junction and Naval Coastal Battery.

Police vehicles remained stationed at several points such as Jodugulapalem, Fishing Harbour, Mangamaripeta, Sagar Nagar, preventing people to go to the beaches and clicking selfies. Community guards were instructed to make sure that no visitors enter the RK beach stretch for clicking selfies. However, several youth were seen attempting taking pictures with the turbulent sea in the background.

To avoid untoward incident on the NH-16 due to high winds, the police imposed curbs on traffic between Anakapalle and Payakaraopeta.

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