Amaravati: Incessant rains for the past few days in the upper catchment areas of Karnataka have left the major rivers in Andhra Pradesh swollen, causing a fresh round of floods in the Krishna and Penna basins.
With the two major reservoirs – Srisailam and Nagarjuna Sagar – filled to the brim, over 3.67 lakh cusecs (cubic feet per second of water flow) of floodwater is being discharged in river Krishna.
From the Dr K L Rao Sagar Pulichintala project downstream, 3.74 lakh cusecs of floodwater was being let out further down to the Prakasam Barrage in Vijayawada.
While the current discharge at Prakasam Barrage stood at 1.93 lakh cusecs, the River Conservator said the flow could increase to four lakh cusecs because of the surplus discharge from Dr K L Rao Sagar.
Officials of NTR, Krishna and Guntur districts have been kept on alert to take precautionary measures, particularly downstream the barrage, as the first warning signal is expected to be raised by Friday.
State Disaster Management Authority Managing Director B R Ambedkar said in a release that people staying along the river banks should remain cautious and not try to cross the streams at any point.
On the other side of the State, the Penna river is in spate, resulting in heavy discharges in Anantapuramu, Sri Satya Sai and YSR Kadapa districts.
Ambedkar said two teams of National Disaster Response Force have been sent to Anantapuramu district for undertaking rescue and relief operations where required.
According to the Water Resources Department data, 25,000 cusecs of water was being discharged from the Chagallu reservoir in Anantapuramu district and Mylavaram reservoir in YSR Kadapa.
The Somasila reservoir on Penna river in SPS Nellore district is also filling up fast with an inflow of 11,893 cusecs of floodwater.
For the first time in decades, the Vedavati river in the Krishna basin, which flows through Anantapuramu and Kurnool districts, has received copious inflows due to heavy downpour in neighbouring Karnataka.
A flood discharge of about 63,000 cusecs has been recorded on Thursday at the medium Bhairavanitippa project on the river, which the irrigation authorities say was the highest-ever in many decades. This project can hold just two thousand million cubic feet of water but is now 66.35 per cent filled due to the flood, the authorities said.
Meanwhile, the SDMA said heavy rains with thunderstorms were likely in the coastal districts of Andhra Pradesh till Saturday under the influence of a low pressure area in the east-central Bay of Bengal.
Ambedkar asked fishermen not to venture into the sea for the next couple of the days in view of the inclement weather conditions.