Remal intensifies into ‘severe cyclonic storm’, landfall tonight | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
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Remal intensifies into ‘severe cyclonic storm’, landfall tonight

ByJayashree Nandi,
May 26, 2024 02:29 PM IST

The cyclone is forecasted to hit West Bengal on Sunday, bringing extremely heavy rainfall and strong winds to the coastal areas of Bangladesh and West Bengal

New Delhi: Cyclone Remal over the North Bay of Bengal has intensified into a “severe cyclonic storm” and is expected to make landfall between West Bengal’s Sagar Island and Bangladesh’s Khepupara on Sunday night, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) said.

Cyclone Remal is expected to make landfall between Sagar Island in West Bengal and Bangladesh’s Khepupara on Sunday midnight (HT Photo)
Cyclone Remal is expected to make landfall between Sagar Island in West Bengal and Bangladesh’s Khepupara on Sunday midnight (HT Photo)

The cyclone is forecasted to hit West Bengal on Sunday, bringing extremely heavy rainfall and strong winds to the coastal areas of Bangladesh and West Bengal. Remal is likely to make landfall at Mongla in Bangladesh. Its maximum sustained speed would be 110-120 kmph gusting to 135 kmph, IMD officials in Kolkata said.

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The cyclone, clocking winds of over 100 kmph, will lay centred over the North Bay of Bengal, about 290 km south-southwest of Khepupara (Bangladesh), 330 km south of Mongla (Bangladesh), 270 km south-southeast of Sagar Islands (West Bengal), 390 km south-southeast of Digha (West Bengal) and 310 km south-southeast of Canning (West Bengal), informed the national weather department.

It will likely continue to move nearly northwards, intensify further and cross Bangladesh and adjoining West Bengal coasts between Sagar Island and Khepupara, close to southwest of Mongla (Bangladesh) by midnight on Sunday.

At 8.30 am on Sunday, Remal was located around 260 km to the south-southwest of Khepupara, 310 km to the south of Mongla, 240 km to the south-southeast of Sagar Islands and 280 km to south-southeast of Canning in South 24 Parganas district. Its maximum sustained wind speed at that time was 90-100 kmph gusting to 110 kmph.

Also Read: How Cyclone ‘Remal’ got its name and what it means

“The system is on very warm sea now where sea surface temperatures are over 32°C, the distance from the monsoon flow has increased and the ridge, a kind of an anti-cyclonic flow is pushing the system. The cyclone will intensify now but we are not expecting it to intensify more than the severe cyclone stage. Let’s observe how Remal behaves,” said a senior IMD official.

A red alert was issued for the coastal districts in West Bengal and eastern districts of Gangetic West Bengal adjacent to Bangladesh for May 26-27. Heavy rainfall is also expected at isolated places over eastern districts of sub-Himalayan West Bengal on May 27 and 28.

It has further warned of heavy rainfall over North Coastal Odisha on May 25 and 26 and very heavy rainfall at isolated places likely over Mizoram, Tripura and South Manipur on Sunday.

Squally wind speed reaching 40-50 kmph gusting to 60 kmph is likely along & off Bangladesh and West Bengal and adjoining North Odisha coasts from May 25 evening.

It is likely to increase becoming gale wind speed reaching 60-70 kmph gusting to 80 kmph from Sunday morning and 100-120 kmph gusting to 135 kmph along & off Bangladesh and adjoining West Bengal coasts from the evening of May 26 for subsequent 12 hours.

Squally wind speed reaching 40-50 kmph gusting to 60 kmph is likely to commence over Howrah, Hoogly, Kolkata and East Medinipur districts from the evening of Sunday. It will increase gradually becoming gale wind speed reaching 70-80 kmph gusting to 90 kmph over these districts during Sunday except East Medinipur where the wind speed may reach up to 60-70 kmph gusting to 80 kmph during the same period.

A storm surge of about one metre above astronomical tide is likely to inundate low-lying areas of coastal West Bengal and 3-4 metres above astronomical tide likely to inundate low-lying areas of coastal Bangladesh around the time of landfall.

Sea conditions would become high (Wave height is 6.0 - 9.0 metres corresponding to sea surface wind speed of 55 to 65 kmph) to very high (Wave height is 9.0 - 14.0 metres corresponding to sea surface wind speed of 75 to 85 kmph) along & off Bangladesh and West Bengal coasts from Sunday onwards till Monday morning.

Amid the cyclone warning, the Kolkata airport authorities cancelled 394 domestic and international flights, with the shutting down of the airport from Sunday noon till 9am on Monday, airport officials said.

Several local trains in the Sealdah and Howrah divisions were also cancelled, said officials.

Meanwhile, the Bengal government started evacuating people from coastal villages. Many were ferried to cyclone shelters on Sunday after the IMD warned of localised flooding.

The IMD has warned of localised flooding and significant damage to vulnerable structures, power and communication lines, kutcha roads, crops, and disruption of traffic due to water logging and squally winds in South and North 24 Parganas, Howrah, Hooghly, Kolkata & adjoining East Medinipur districts.

Political parties called off the rallies and roadshows scheduled for Sunday. Rallies were scheduled for the seventh and last phase of the Lok Sabha polls at nine constituencies in South and North 24 Parganas districts and Kolkata which goes to polls on June 1.

“Safety of people comes first. We have cancelled several rallies that were to be addressed by senior leaders such as state president Sukanta Majumdar,” Bengal Bharatiya Janata Party spokesperson Samik Bhattacharya said.

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