Salem/Dharmapuri: A flood alert was issued across 12 districts in the Cauvery delta region on Saturday following water release from Mettur dam increasing to 1.40 lakh cusecs due to heavy inflow into the dam.
The Mettur dam reached its full reservoir level of 120 feet on Saturday afternoon. The continuous release of excess water from Kabini and KRS dams in Karnataka has led to water inflows into dam to jump to 1.35 lakh cusecs.
According to Public Works Department (PWD) officials, about 1.25 lakh cusecs of water is being released from the dam including through the ‘16 gate Ellis surplus sluice bridge’. Officials issued a flood alert across all districts in the Cauvery delta region.
In a statement, Salem district collector Ms. Rohini R Bhajibhakare said, “residents of low lying areas along the Cauvery river bank are advised to go to safer places and protect their cattle and belongings. Precautionary measures have been taken by the departments of revenue, PWD and police. Public have been alerted by ‘tom tom’ announcements, direct visits and through various media. People can call toll free no 1077 for any emergency help.” She also cautioned people to avoid swimming, fishing, bathing cattle and taking selfies in the swelling river.
In Dharmapuri, the huge surge in the surplus water release from dams in the upper riparian state has increased inflows at Hoenakkal. On Saturday, water level was 80,000 cusecs when measured in the morning by Central Water Commission office (CWC) staff. This gradually increased to 1.35 lakh cusecs later. The huge surge here in the Cauvery has fully covered the Hogenakkal waterfalls and also the pathway to that place, disappointing picnickers because they were not allowed to enter the river or the waterfalls area.
As a precautionary measure, the district administration has appointed teams to monitor the situation in Biligundulu and Ottamalai villages on the banks of the Cauvery river. If required, local people will be shifted to safer places, if there is a further increase in inflows into the Cauvery on the Tamil Nadu side. Local villagers are patrolling the riverside to avert any untoward incidents that may occur if picnickers enter the gushing river without realising the risk....