Cyclone Gaja, originating from Bay of Bengal, is forecast to make landfall in Chennai and other parts of Tamil Nadu today.
The storm, expected to hit Tamil coast between Cuddalore and Pamban, will bring heavy downpours in a couple of places in Kerala including Kollam, Pathanamthitta and Idduki.
The Indian Navy and NDRF are on high alert, with two naval ships, Ranvir and Khanjar on the stand by. These vessels will move to spots affected once the storm visits mainland.
As many as 30,500 rescue personnel also wait in ready mode to deal with the situation.
Schools and colleges will stay shut in Ramanthapuram, cuddalore, Nagapatttinam, Tiruvaruru, Pudukottai and Thanjavur. All academic institutions will remain closed in Puducherry and Karaikal regions too.
Among damages likely to occur , the storm might blow off sheeting from roof tops and cause power outages.
Also sea water is expected to rise up to 1 meter high and flood low lying places of Karaikal district of Puducherry and Thanjavur, Nagapattinam, Ramanathapuram and Pudukkottai districts of Tamil Nadu.
The cyclone after passing Kerala is predicted to weaken out.