Hyderabad: Ten people were killed as heavy rains lashed Telangana and Andhra Pradesh on Thursday, officials said.
While five people were killed in various rain-related incidents in Telangana, an equal number of deaths were reported from Andhra Pradesh.
Heavy rains accompanied by hailstorm and gusty winds wrecked havoc in several parts of both the Telugu states, uprooting trees and electricity poles and inundating low-lying areas, affecting vehicular traffic and electricity supply.
The unseasonal rains provided relief to people from scorching heat but affected the normal life and caused widespread damage to crops.
Heavy downpour with hailstorm and strong gales lashed many parts of Hyderabad and the outskirts, throwing the normal life out of gear. A seven-year-old boy died when he was struck by lightning while playing under a tree at Karmanghat on the city outskirts.
The strong winds uprooted trees in several areas in the city, damaging few vehicles bringing the traffic to a halt. Near darkness enveloped the city in the afternoon and the heavy rains significantly brought down the temperature.
Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) pressed emergency teams into service to remove the trees from roads and also hoardings which were hanging precariously.
Telangana Excise Minister T. Padma Rao, who visited some areas in Hyderabad, told reporters that GHMC received reports of tree falling at 45 places in the city. There were also complaints of water logging at 25 places.
Several districts of both the Telugu states were receiving rains since morning. Lightning claimed four lives in Nalgonda and Ranga Reddy districts.
Telangana Energy Minister Jagdish Reddy said they received reports of 1,250 electricity poles being damaged due to strong winds. The authorities have opened two control rooms in Hyderabad and Warangal and were making efforts to restore electricity supply in the affected areas.
Heavy rains battered Visakhapatnam, Srikakulam and Vizianagaram districts in north coastal Andhra early Thursday. Many parts of south coastal Andhra and Rayalaseema regions also recorded heavy rainfall.
Three persons died of lightning strike in Guntur and Prakasam districts of Andhra Pradesh. In Guntur town, a man died when a hoarding fell on him. In Kurnool district, one person was crushed to death under a tree which uprooted due to strong gale.
The heavy rains damaged mango, paddy, maize and other crops. Several cattle perished due to lightning. The unseasonal rains also disrupted electricity supply in towns and villages.
According to the met office, the rains were triggered by cyclonic circulation over north Odisa and neighbourhood and another cyclonic circulation over West Vidarbha and neighbourhood. It has forecast thunderstorm accompanied with squall/hail at isolated places in all the districts of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh on Friday.