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Cyclone Amphan Makes Landfall In West Bengal With Superstorm Winds

by Amitabh Joshi 11 months ago Views 1517

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Cyclone Amphan has hit West Bengal and Odisha, making landfall with wind speeds which could cross 110 kmph by the time the storm reaches the Kolkata region. The process of Cyclone Amphan’s landfall began early Wednesday afternoon.

The main landfall of the cyclone is between Digha in West Bengal and Hatiya Islands in Bangladesh.


 

A heavy storm surge and winds of up to 155-165 kmph are expected.

Over 40 National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) teams have already been deployed in West Bengal and Odisha and over 6 lakh people have been evacuated.

 

“Amphan is the most intense and the first super cyclone since the 1999 Odisha cyclone. We are dealing with a multi-hazard scenario as the devastating winds are expected to cause extensive damage to structures, houses and trees", said Mrutyunjay Mohapatra, Director-General of the India Meteorological Department.

Watch the latest press briefing on Cyclone Amphan here:

UN humanitarian agencies stepped up preparations in the Rohingya settlements of Cox’s Bazar, home to approximately 1.2 million refugees and host community members.“Communities are already vulnerable to the devastating health crisis and we know that if people are forced to seek communal shelter, they will be unable to maintain physical distancing and run the risk of contracting or transmitting the disease,” said the International Organization for Migration, which cited government statistics of five cases of coronavirus confirmed in the refugee population at Cox’s Bazar,.

According to the World Meteorological Organisation, the tropical cyclone season in the Bay of Bengal and Arabian Sea has two peaks, around May and around November and, in the past, the basin witnessed huge casualties.

"The deadliest tropical cyclone on record, the Great Bhola Cyclone in November 1970, killed at least 300,000 people in modern-day Bangladesh and led to the establishment in 1972, of a body in charge of the regional coordination mechanism for tropical cyclones, the WMO/ESCAP Panel on Tropical Cyclones. Extensive and coordinated disaster risk reduction campaigns have, in recent years, limited casualties", the WMO stated.

The fury of Fani

"For instance, extremely severe cyclonic storm Fani made landfall in Odisha on May 3 2019. Accurate advance forecasts and a huge, well-coordinated disaster risk reduction campaign, including the evacuation of hundreds of thousands of people, were credited with keeping the death toll to a minimum. This was in contrast to the 1999 Odisha cyclone which caused thousands of deaths in India", the world weather watchdog said.

Feature image courtesy: The Weather Channel

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