Cyclone Tauktae: Goa authorities gear up to tackle situation

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Panaji, May 15 (PTI) The government machinery in Goa has put in place necessary measures to tackle the situation in view of the warning about cyclone Tauktae, officials said on Saturday.

As per the India Meteorological Department's (IMD) prediction, Konkan and Goa are expected to receive heavy to very heavy rainfall on May 15 and 16 as the weather condition is very likely to intensify into cyclonic storm Tauktae.

The Goa Fire and Emergency Services said it has kept its personnel ready to tackle the situation.

'We have kept our force ready to face any kind of eventualities arising out of the cyclone,' its director Ashok Menon told PTI.

The Emergency Services, with its force of 800 personnel, have taken proactive steps in this regard, he said.

'The cyclonic winds and rains that lashed the state on Friday did not cause much damage,' Menon added.

The disaster management response forces of the state's two districts - South Goa and North Goa - led by the respective collectors, held meetings on Friday to check the preparedness.

According to officials, as curfew is in place in the state till May 24 due to coronavirus situation, the impact of cyclone is likely to be less severe.

State Ports Minister Michael Lobo said the entire beach belt in this tourist state is currently empty.

'Due to the curfew, all the restaurants and regular activities in the coastal belt are shut. People are also not allowed to move on the beaches. This will help in ensure that the impact of the cyclone remains minimal,' he said.

Sanguem tehsil in South Goa witnessed several incidents of tree falling due to cyclonic winds on Friday.

Sanguem MLA Prasad Gaonkar said he has been personally requesting people not to venture out during the weekend in view of the cyclone warning.

'I have requested people to stay indoors and be safe from the cyclone,' he said. PTI RPS NP NP