Heavy monsoons are lashing the state of Kerala and most of the districts are on a high alert with the doors to the 23 dams being opened and all gates of Idukki Dam being opened for the first time in 26 years. Many of the tourists and travellers in the region are stranded with the authorities trying their best to evacuate them. While the flights to Kochi were stopped for a brief period on Thursday, the flight services have resumed again. However, due to landslides and the strong floods, the situation continues to be dire with the roadways affected and many of the vehicles not being allowed to reach farther destinations. The lower lying areas are completely flooded with passages to most of the popular tourist destinations cut off.
If you have your tickets booked to visit Kerala in the coming days – then keep checking the news and depending on the situation, if possible, cancel the trip. However, if you have your heart set on the trip and are a believer of miracles or simply brave (or stupid) to still continue, then you might want to take a look at some of these precautions. While the flight services have now resumed, the situation is still not under control and rains are expected to continue. High alerts have already been issued. Majority of the tourists have their tickets booked for the blooming of the Neelakurinji flower in Eravikulam National Park, an event which takes place once every 12 years. Coupled with the upcoming Independence Day holiday bang in the middle of the week, many of the travellers are now in a quandry. If you’re one of those who’s decided to continue with the trip, here’s some things you need to do:
Check With Your Hotel/Host
This might be the best bet. If you feel the news might not be true and the situation might have improved, simply contact your hotel or your host. They are most likely to give you the actual updates to the situation. If they inform you that the situation is dire and ask you to stay away, then it might be wise to listen to them and actually stay away. And if they say it is safe and you will be able to reach safely and make the most of the trip then make sure you are constantly connected to them. Till you are there safe and sound, stay and touch and keep appraising the situation.
Get Constant News Updates
Not really something you need to be told but keep checking the news. That is the one gateway you have to the world of Kerala. If there are any advisories being issued, you can check them and then make a calculated decision. Also, if the situation improves, you will immediately know and feel better. Your flight and/or railways might also be issuing advisories. If you’re from abroad, you might hear of your country tourism board issuing a notice too. US has already warned all citizens visiting India to stay away from Kerala. If you’re constantly on the news, you might get super paranoid but it will also help you stay updated.
Check The Weather Apps
There are a million weather apps out there. Keep track of the weather and what is in store. Although not very accurate, it cannot be completely off the mark either. For Kerala, you can visit the Kerala Regional Meteorological Centre at https://www.imdtvm.gov.in/ to keep track. Also, they update the status daily, making it easier. For the next few days, warnings have already been issued.
Keep Emergency Numbers Handy
Ensure that you have a phone on you at all times and keep those batteries charged! Also, keep emergency numbers handy. For Kerala, the Kerala Police number is 0471-3243000. Make sure you keep your family members appraised of your situation. Also, like said before, keep in touch with your hotel , hostel or hosts so if you’re in trouble, you know and they can bail you out.
Keep A Plan B Ready
Last minute resort but hey, never hurts to have a Plan B right! Also, the disappointment will be slightly tempered with the assurance of the entire plan not going to waste.