Guwahati: Amid COVID-19 pandemic when several restrictions are imposed across the nation, Supercyclone Amphan is likely to make landfall in West Bengal on Wednesday afternoon or evening. The extremely severe cyclonic storm heading during such crisis is making the work of National Disaster Response Force more challenging.
The cyclone is expected to cause flooding and massive damage in the coastal areas of Bengal. Rail will be impacted and, power and communications will be affected.
Further, impacted by the tropical storm, Sikkim, Assam and Meghalaya are predicted to received light to moderate rainfall.
Here are 8 facts about the super cyclone:
- The name Amphan, pronounced as ‘Um-pun’, meaning sky was given by Thailand in 2004. According to the Press Information Bureau, the next few cyclones will be named Nisarga (suggested by Bangladesh), Gati (India), Nivar (Iran), Burevi (Maldives), Tauktae (Myanmar) and Yaas (Oman).
- Amphan is the equivalent of a Category-5 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale, according to US space agency NASA. The space agency’s Aqua satellite passed over the Indian Ocean on Monday and gathered water vapour data that showed the intensity of powerful tropical cyclone.
- The storm was formed over south-east Bay of Bengal on Saturday evening (May 16). It was designated Tropical Cyclone 01B. Overnight, it quickly strengthened to hurricane force.
- The supercyclone is likely to make landfall in Bengal tomorrow with a maximum sustained wind speed of 155-165 km per hour, gusting to 185 km per hour. It is likely to make landfall as a strong storm equivalent to a Category 3 hurricane.
- Dangerous winds, storm surge and flooding to coastal areas of West Bengal in India and Bangladesh is expected. The IMD has warned of a storm surge of about 4-5 meters above astronomical tide that is likely to inundate low-lying areas of West Bengal during landfall.
- Massive devastation is also expected since the coastal areas which will be impacted are densely populated. The IMD anticipates extensive damage to houses and potential threat from flying objects. Rail and road traffic will also be disrupted.
- The storm is being constantly tracked by Doppler Weather Radar at Vishakhapatnam.
- NDRF has deployed 37 teams in the coastal areas, as the states begin evacuating people from vulnerable areas.