Cyclone Yaas: Armed forces airlift 950 NDRF personnel; 26 helicopters on standby

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Representative Image
Representative Image

New Delhi [India], May 23 (ANI): Ahead of Cyclone Yaas, the Armed Forces have commenced preparations to mitigate the impact of the anticipated disaster by airlifting 950 National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) personnel across the country, with 26 helicopters in standby for immediate deployment.

As per a statement from the Ministry of Defence, 70 tonnes of load has also been airlifted from Jamnagar, Varanasi, Patna and Arakonnam to Kolkata, Bhubaneswar and Port Blair in 15 Transport Aircraft as of May 23.

"A total of sixteen transport aircraft and 26 helicopters are on standby for immediate deployment while the Indian Navy, fresh from Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief (HADR) and rescue operations on the Western Coast, has moved 10 HADR pallets to Bhubaneswar and Kolkata," the statement said.

While five HADR pallets are ready at Port Blair, eight ships of Eastern Naval Command and Andaman and Nicobar Command have been embarked with HADR Bricks to provide succour to the people likely to be impacted.

Four diving and 10 flood relief columns have been pre-positioned at Kolkata, Bhubaneswar and Chilika for rendering assistance to civil administration at short notice.

Additionally, seven flood relief teams and two diving teams are ready at different locations in Andaman and Nicobar Islands and Naval Aircraft and helicopters in Vishakhapatnam and Port Blair are on operational readiness to undertake search and rescue missions.

Eight flood relief columns and three Engineer Task Forces of the Army are ready for immediate deployment on requisition by the civil administration and the Armed Forces are in constant touch with the civil administration of the affected states.

Armed Forces teams are aware of the need to keep the road and rail links open to ensure an uninterrupted supply of life-saving oxygen and drugs required for treatment at COVID-19 hospitals.

The low-pressure area which formed over the east-central Bay of Bengal on Saturday morning, has intensified into a depression on Sunday and by Monday morning, it will form a cyclone namely Yaas, informed the India Meteorological Department (IMD) Director General of Meteorology Dr Mrutyunjay Mohapatra.

"It is very likely to intensify into a very severe cyclonic storm. It will cross West Bengal and north Odisha coasts on the evening of May 26," informed Dr Mohapatra.

IMD had predicted the wind speed of the cyclone to be around 155-165 km per hour, gusting to 185 km per hour. (ANI)