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New Delhi, May 19, 2020
Super cyclonic storm Amphan over the Bay of Bengal is expected to cross the West Bengal-Bangladesh coasts close to Sundarbans during the afternoon/evening tomorrow with maximum sustained wind speed of 155-165 kmph gusting to 185 kmph, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) said here today.
In a cyclone warning for West Bengal and north Odisha coasts issued at 1100 hours IST today, the IMD said Amphan (pronounced as Um-Pun) had moved north-northeastwards with a speed of 15 kmph during the past six hours and lay centred at 0830 hours IST near latitude 16.0°N and longitude 86.8°E over Westcentral Bay of Bengal, about 480 km nearly south of Paradip (Odisha), 630 km south-southwest of Digha (West Bengal) and 750 km south-southwest of Khepupara (Bangladesh).
"It is very likely to move north-northeastwards across northwest Bay of Bengal and cross West Bengal – Bangladesh coasts between Digha (West Bengal) and Hatiya Islands (Bangladesh) close to Sundarbans during the Afternoon / Evening of 20th May 2020 with maximum sustained wind speed of 155-165 kmph gusting to 185 kmph," the bulletin said.
The super cyclone is now being continuously tracked by the Doppler Weather Radar (DWR) at Vishakhapatnam in Andhra Pradesh, it said.
The bulletin said rainfall has commenced over coastal Odisha since early hours of today. Rainfall intensity is likely to increase gradually and become maximum during 19th night to 20th afternoon.
Light to moderate rainfall is very likely at most places of coastal Odisha with heavy to very heavy rainfall at isolated places over Jagatsinghpur, Kendrapara and Bhadrak Districts and isolated heavy falls over Jajpur, Balasore, Cuttack, Mayurbhanj, Khordha and Puri districts on 19th May and isolated heavy to very heavy rainfall at isolated places over north coastal Odisha (Jagatsinghpur, Bhadrak and Keonjhargarh Districts) on 20th May.
Coastal districts of Gangetic West Bengal (East Medinipur, South & North 24 Parganas) are likely to experience light to moderate rainfall at many places commencing from today afternoon. Rainfall intensity is likely to increase gradually and become maximum on 20th May.
There will likely be rainfall at most places with heavy to very heavy falls at a few places and extremely heavy falls at isolated places over Gangetic West Bengal (East & West Medinipur, South & North 24 Parganas, Howrah, Hoogli, Kolkata and adjoining districts) on 20th May and isolated heavy rain over interior districts on 21st May, it said.
The bulletin said light to moderate rainfall was likely at most places with heavy to very heavy falls at a few places over Malda and Dinajpur districts on 20th May and over most of the districts of Sub-Himalayan West Bengal & Sikkim on 21st May.
Light to moderate rainfall is likely at most places with heavy to very heavy falls at a few places over the western districts of Assam & Meghalaya on 21st May, it said.
According to the warning, squally wind speed reaching 45 to 55 kmph gusting to 65 kmph is prevailing along and off south Odisha coast. It is very likely to increase and extend northwards becoming 55 to 65 kmph gusting to 75 kmph northwards to north Odisha coast by today afternoon and along and off West Bengal coast by tonight.
The wind speed will gradually increase becoming gale wind speed reaching 75 to 85 kmph gusting to 95 kmph from 20th morning along and off north Odisha (Jagatsinghpur, Kendrapara, Bhadrak, Balasore and Mayurbhanj districts) coast and West Bengal (East & West Medinipur, South & North 24 Parganas, Howrah, Hoogli, Kolkata Districts) coast. It will gradually increase thereafter becoming 100 to 110 kmph gusting to 125 kmph along and off the above mentioned districts of North Odisha.
Gale wind speed reaching 155 to 165 kmph gusting to 185 kmph is very likely along and off East Medinipur and North & South 24 Parganas districts and 110-120 kmph gusting to 130 kmph over Kolkata, Hoogli, Howrah and West Medinipur districts of West Bengal during the time of landfall (20th afternoon to night).
Squally wind speed reaching 55-65 kmph gusting to 75 kmph is likely to prevail over Puri, Khordha, Cuttack and Jajpur districts of Odisha during 20th May.
As far as the deep sea area is concerned, the IMD said gale wind speed reaching 225-235 gusting to 255 kmph is prevailing over westcentral Bay of Bengal. It is likely to prevail over northern parts of central Bay of Bengal and adjoining North Bay of Bengal during 19th May.
Gale wind speed reaching 180-190 gusting 210 kmph is likely over north Bay of Bengal from 19th afternoon. It will gradually decrease becoming 165-175 kmph gusting to 195 kmph by 20th afternoon.
The sea condition is phenomenal and is likely to continue for the next 12 hours over southern parts of Westcentral Bay of Bengal. It will become phenomenal over northern parts of central Bay of Bengal and adjoining north Bay of Bengal on 19th May and over north Bay of Bengal on 20th May.
IMD advised ishermen not to venture into west-central and adjoining central parts of south Bay of Bengal during next 24 hours, and into central Bay of Bengal and North Bay of Bengal during 19 th to 20th May.
Also, fishermen are advised not to venture into North Bay of Bengal along and off North Odisha, West Bengal and adjoining Bangladesh coasts till 20th May.
Storm surge of about 4-5 meters above astronomical tide is likely to inundate low lying areas of South & North 24 Parganas and about 3-4 meters over the low lying areas of East Medinipur district of West Bengal during the time of landfall.
The IMD said extensive damage was expected to all types of "kutcha" houses and some damage to old, badly managed "pucca" structures in East Medinipur, South and North 24 Parganas, Howrah, Hoogli and Kolkata districts. There is potential threat from flying objects, it said.
It also warned of the possibility of extensive uprooting of communication and power poles, disruption of rail/road links at several places, extensive damage to standing crops, plantations and orchards, blowing down of palm and coconut trees and uprooting of large bushy trees. Large boats and ships may get torn from their moorings.
The bulletin called for total suspension of fishing operations during 18th to 20th May and diversion or suspension of rail and road traffic.
People in the affected areas must remain indoors. Authorities should mobilise evacuation of people from low-lying areas. Movement in motor boats and small ships is not advisable, it said.
The bulletin also warned of the possibility of similar damage, though on a lesser scale, in Jagatsinghpur, Kendrapara, Bhadrak, Balasore, Jajpur and Mayurbhanj districts of Odisha.