Mumbai: In view of IMD’s warning regarding Cyclone Tauktae, Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray has directed the authorities in coastal districts of the state to remain alert and well-equipped to tackle the situation. The Mumbai civic body on Friday said it was taking various precautionary measures in view of the IMD’s warning that cyclone Tauktae is likely to pass close to the city during the weekend. As part of these measures, Bandra Worli sea link will be closed for traffic today and tomorrow. All government centres for COVID-19 vaccination will also be closed for two days, the BMC said. Also Read - No Hike in Property Tax in Mumbai Till Covid-19 Situation Continues: Mayor Kishori Pednekar

The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) informed in a release that potentially dangerous tree branches are being cut, dewatering pumps are being stationed in low-lying areas, temporary shelters would be opened if required and rescue teams would be deployed on six main ‘Chowpatties’ (beaches). Already 384 dangerous trees close to COVID-19 centres have been pruned. Also Read - 'Fake' Vaccination Drive Held in Mumbai's Kandivli, Allege Housing Society Residents; 4 Arrested

India Meteorological Department has warned that cyclone Tauktae, forming over the Arabian Sea, will intensify into a cyclonic storm and is likely to bring strong winds and rainfall to the city on May 15 and 16. Last June, Mumbai was badly hit due to cyclone Nisarga which made landfall in neighbouring Raigad district. Also Read - Infected With Black Fungus, 3 Children Undergo Surgery, Eyes Removed In Mumbai 

BMC officials said they are prepared to shift around 400 patients from the ICUs of Jumbo COVID-19 facilities (field hospitals) at Dahisar and BKC to civic and state-run hospitals. “We have kept our plan ready, but the patients will be shifted only if required,” Suresh Kakani, additional municipal commissioner of BMC told PTI.

(With inputs from PTI)