Floods displace 4,000 families

Depression off Mullaitivu wreaks havoc

by Dasun Edirisinghe

A depression in the Bay of Bengal, about 200 km off Mullaitivu, caused floods and displaced 4,000 families in the District yesterday as tanks in the region spilled over.

The Meteorology Department yesterday issued an early warning of heavy showers and strong winds in most parts of the country and surrounding sea areas as the depression had intensified.

Deputy Director of the Met Department S. H. Kariyawasam told The Island that the depression was expected to intensify further into a minor cyclone and move over the northern part of Sri Lanka last night.

He said that shallow and deep sea areas off the coast extending from Jaffna to Batticaloa via Trincomalee would experience very rough conditions, strong winds and intermittent rain.

The fisheries and naval communities were advised to refrain from engaging maritime activities in those seas.

Kariyawasam said strong winds and very heavy rainfall of more than 150 mm would also occur in the Eastern, Northern, North- central and North -western provinces.

Deputy Director of the Disaster Management Centre Sarath Lal Kumara said 4,000 families in Mullaitivu had been displaced by floods.

They were temporarily sheltered in schools with the assistance of the Mullaitivu Divisional Secretary, he said.

Kumara said that 48 people were affected as four houses had been damaged by earthslips in Ambagamuwa in the Nuwara Eliya District.

"The government had to remove 54 people belonging to 11 families in Gonadiga Watta in Udunuwara due to threat of landslides," he said.

The deputy director said that the Mullaitivu–Oddusudan road, Puttalam – Mannar road and several sub roads in Galle and Matara Districts had also been inundated.

Several areas of Colombo, including Armour Street, Dematagoda, Narahenpita, Kalubowila, Thummulla, Pettah, Rajagiriya and Town Hall had been under water due to continuous rains from yesterday morning, he said.

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