Bhubaneswar, Aug 26 (PTI) Fear of flood loomed large over parts of Odisha on Wednesday as heavy rains, triggered by a low-pressure area over the Bay of Bengal, battered the state, submerging low-lying areas, snapping road links and claiming at least two lives, officials said.
While all the 30 districts of the state received rainfall of varying intensity since Tuesday, very heavy showers were recorded in nine districts, causing water-logging in many low-lying areas, Special Relief Commissioner, P K Jena said.
The average rainfall of the state in the 24 hours till 9 am was 76.6 mm, while the nine districts recorded more than 100 mm rainfall.
Kendrapara recorded 168.3 mm rainfall, followed by 162.3 mm in Subarnapur, 146.5 mm in Jagatsinghpur, Boudh (133.3 mm), Keonjhar (124.8 mm), Mayurbhanj (122.2 mm), Bhadrak (117.0 mm), Jajpur (115.0 mm) and Cuttack (102 mm), he said.
Four blocks of the state have recorded rainfall of more than 200 mm during the period. Marsaghai block in Kendrapara district received the highest 234 mm rainfall.
Bhubaneswar recorded 92 mm rainfall and Cuttack city received 77 mm rainfall.
Many low-lying areas, including paddy fields and roads, are submerged in districts like Kendrapara, Mayurbhanj, Keonjhar and Jagatsinghpur, Jena said.
Steps are being taken to pump out the water, he added.
A 62-year-old person was killed due to a wall collapse in Mahuasuli village in the Sukurili area of Mayurbhanj district, Jena said.
The driver of a truck died after the vehicle overturned due to the gushing water of the Sanapalia river, flowing over National Highway 49 in Mayurbhanj district, inspector in-charge of Karanjia police station Sarojini Singh said.
A 62-year-old woman went missing after being swept away by floodwater of a rivulet while crossing a road near Manatri in the Barasahi area. Efforts are on to trace her, a police officer said.
With this, the death toll in rain-related incidents in the state so far this month has risen to seven, officials said.
The water level of the Baitarani river has crossed the danger-mark in some places due to heavy rainfall in the upper and lower catchment areas, Jena said.
The water level of the river is at 38.84 metre as against the danger-mark of 38.36 metre at Anandpur in Keonjhar district, besides it is also near the red-mark at Akhuapada in Bhadrak, Jena said.
A flood situation is likely to emerge in low-lying areas of Bhadrak and Jajpur districts by Thursday, he said.
The Jalaka river is flowing at 6.49 metre as against the danger-mark of 5.5 metre at Mathani in Balasore district where floodwaters are likely to inundate paddy fields, he said, adding that the water level of Budhabalanga river may also rise following heavy rainfall in the catchment areas.
Teams of National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and Odisha Disaster Rapid Action Force (ODRAF) have been mobilised in Jajpur, Kendrapara, Jagatsinghpur, Bhadrak and Balasore districts for rescue operations in the event of any flood situation, he said.
The district collectors, particularly of Bhadrak, Jajpur and Kendrapara, have been asked to keep a watch and remain in a state of preparedness, he said.
Revenue and Disaster Management Minister Sudam Marndi said the government is monitoring the situation and the collectors of the districts concerned have been asked to make arrangements for rescue and relief operations whenever necessary.
A thorough assessment of damage to crops and properties will be made when the water recedes for providing compensation to the affected people, he said.
Chief Engineer of Water Resources Department Jyotirmya Rath said some parts of Bhadrak and Jajpur may witness medium-level flooding due to swollen Baitarani, and there is no cause for worry as all the embankments are strong enough to meet the water flow.
Other major rivers, including Mahanadi, Brahmani, Subarnarekha, Kathajodi and Rushikulya, are flowing below the danger level, he said.
Following incessant rainfall, some areas of Bhadrak, Mayurbhanj, Kendrapara, Khurda, Jagatsinghpur and Keonjhar districts faced severe waterlogging, snapping road connectivity, officials said.
The Meteorological Centre said that the low-pressure area over north Bay of Bengal, which has now become well- marked, is likely to gradually move northwestwards.
Several coastal districts may experience rainfall under its impact till Thursday, it said.
This is the fifth low-pressure area formed over the Bay of Bengal this month. Four back-to-back low-pressure systems on August 4, 9, 13 and 19 have caused heavy rainfall in the state, leading to flood-like situations in several areas.
The MeT Centre has issued a 'Red' warning for Sundergarh, Sambalpur, Sonepur, Bargarh, Bolangir, Jharsuguda, Deogarh and Kalahandi districts where heavy to very heavy and even extremely heavy rainfall may occur till Thursday.
'Orange' warning was issued for Puri, Khurda, Angul, Nuapada, Nabarangpur, Keonjhar, Dhenkanal, Mayurbhanj and Kandhamal districts with the likelihood of heavy to very heavy rainfall in some places.
Fishermen have been advised not to venture into the deep sea till Thursday as squally weather with wind having speed up to 55 kmph may prevail in the region. PTI SKN SOM SOM