SAN FRANCISCO (Diya TV) — At least ten people have been killed and thousands others evacuated from India’s coastal areas as Cyclone Vardah ripped through Chennai.

Schools and businesses where shuttered and services at the airport were suspended as Vardah hit the mainland with heavy rainstorms and winds with speeds up to 85 mph.

Teams from the army and National Disaster Relief Force, as well as two of the navy’s ships, are ready on standby orders.

Police said disaster management teams had evacuated more than 15,000 people from low-lying areas. The Tamil Nadu state government said in a statement that 260 trees in the city had fallen as a result of strong winds. Parts of the city have also been flooded. The gusts of wind were so powerful that glass panels from the facade of Chennai’s Hyatt-Regency were ripped from the building’s face.

Chennai, a city on the Bay of Bengal in eastern India, is the country’s second largest financial hub after Mumbai. Vardah could take a heavy toll on the country’s agricultural sector, destroying banana plantations, papaya groves and rice paddies.

The storm comes about a year after Chennai experienced devastating floods which killed 70 people. In December 2011, more than 30 people died and many homes were damaged after a cyclone struck near the town of Pondicherry. And in May 2010 at least 23 people died as a powerful cyclone caused widespread havoc across Andhra Pradesh.

Tropical cyclone Vardah is India’s strongest storm since October 2014, when cyclone Hudhud moved into Andhra Pradesh, claiming over 100 lives and causing $3.4 billion in damage.