VIZIANAGARAM: In a tragic incident, a flash flood caused by the lifting of the fourth gate of the Tatipudi reservoir on Gosthani river, claimed two lives at Sthanavaram in Jami mandal, Vizianagaram district on Saturday. A tribal woman was washed away and a fire department constable met with watery grave during search operations later in the afternoon.
None have any clue so far as to who lifted the flood gate and why. District collector Vivek Yadav, after inspecting the spot, termed it a 'human error' and ordered a probe into the incident.
According to officials, two women, Gammela Thademma (34), a resident of Musidipalli in Gantyada mandal, and Vantala Bheemalamma (55), were washing clothes in a stream downstream the reservoir in the morning. Around 11 am, suddenly the fourth flood gate of the reservoir was lifted and water came gushing. Thademma was washed away, while Bheemalamma managed to reach the river bank, said M Srinivasa Rao, in-charge SI of Jami police station.
Upon information, a rescue team rushed to the spot and Bonu Simhachalam (52), head constable of the Fire Department, Vizanagram, who was a part of the rescue team, entered into the water to trace Thademma. But, he was caught in the swirling waters and drowned.
The rescue team traced the body of the fireman at Jami village around 4 pm, but Thademma's body was yet to be found. Cases have been registered at Gantayada and Jami police stations. In the afternoon, collector Vivek Yadav inspected the spot. "The lifting of the flood gate appears to be a human error.
The fourth gate was lifted, letting out around 900 cusecs of water. A detailed probe has been ordered into the incident. Severe action will be taken against the people behind the incident," the collector promised. Meanwhile, low-lying areas downstream the reservoir including S Kota, Jami of Viznagaram district and Padmanabhama, Bheemili areas in Visakhapatnam district have been flooded.