Red alert at Kerala’s Idukki reservoir, floods feared in Kochi

Monsoon rain in Kerala has proved to be deadly for at least 20 people, most of whom perished in landslides and floods.

Now, there fears that water released into the Periyar river from a reservoir may cause it to flood its banks in the districts of Idukki and Ernakulam (which includes the city of Kochi). This afternoon, the meteorological centre in Thiruvananthapuram has predicted heavy to very heavy rains in the next 24 hours.

Kerala’s electricity board today issued a red alert in a dam in the Idukki reservoir. This is the third alert stage before the sluices are opened.

Earlier today, a trial run began at the dam — one sluice was opened. But water levels in the reservoir continued to surge. Water level in Idukki reservoir has crossed the 2400 ft mark.

As of 8.00 pm, the water level is 2400 ft, just short of the maximum capacity: 2403 ft.

People being taken to safety following a landslide triggered by heavy rains in Idukki. (Photo: PTI)

The district collectors of Ernakulam and Idukki have been asked to monitor the situation round the clock.

If the Periyar bursts its banks, traffic at Kochi’s airport will be hit. Earlier today, it cancelled all arriving flights, but services later resumed.

As well, waterlogging was reported in some parts of the airport, which is now keeping a close eye on developments at the Idukki reservoir.

WATCH | When Mumbai suffered monsoon waterlogging. Again.

Updated: August 9, 2018 — 3:08 pm