The coastal areas of Tamil Nadu and Puducherry have seen evacuations of over one lakh people, so as to "tide over the worst challenge" of Cyclone Nivar, said SN Pradhan, chief of National Disaster Response Force (NDRF).
As for the preparations, twenty teams have been kept on stand-by at Vijaywada (Andhra Pradesh), Cuttack (Odisha), and Thrissur (Kerala). These states, along with Tamil Nadu and Puducherry are also likely to face the brunt of the cyclone.
"As per reports last received, the cyclone may make a landfall a little later than earlier predicted and it could be after 2-3 am on Thursday or on November 26," Pradhan said in a recorded audio-visual message. The speed is going to be that of a very severe cyclonic storm which is 130-145kmph with gusting winds, he said. Earlier, it was anticipated that the cyclone would peak on Wednesday, with gusting winds at 110 kmph.
Pradhan added that there is 'perfect coordination' between the state and central authorities, and the forces are well equipped with cutters and boats to help those in need to be rescued. NDRF teams are also to be well equipped with PPE kits, and appropriate measures for COVID-19 prevention.
"A total of 25 NDRF teams are deployed on the likely affected coastal areas of Tamil Nadu, Puducherry and Andhra Pradesh after consultation with state authorities. Out of these, 15 teams have been deployed in costal districts of Tamil Nadu. Six have been positioned at Cuddalore, three at Viluppuram, two teams each at Chennai and Chengalpattu, while one team each at Mayiladuthurai and Nagapattinam districts," an NDRF spokesperson said; three teams are deployed at Pondicherry, and one team at Karaikal.