Wind speeds reach 100km/h as cyclone moves inland

Cyclone Nilam has brought heavy rainfall and strong winds to the south-eastern coast of India today and is now heading inland towards the city of Chennai.

Just as Hurricane Sandy has begun to dissipate over the US, Cyclone Nilam is now heading west and causing flooding and property damage to the states of Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh, and the town of Pondicherry.

India’s weather department issued a statement on Thursday morning in which it said that extensive damage had been caused to crops, and thatched-roof properties, along the coast. Power and communication lines are also down in the area.

Schools and community centres in Chennai – Tamil Nadu’s state capital – are being made ready to receive emergency evacuations.

However, there was good news when the storm passed Sri Lanka with less damage than expected.