AMPHAN CYCLONE: High alerts and mass evacuation before it turns into extreme cyclonic storm


         NASA satellite showing the Amphan cyclone pattern       (imagecrédits:
Amphan is the second most super intense cyclone —which has been formed in Bay of Bengal after 1999.
It is equivalent of the 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.

Now, the Cyclone Amphan is currently over the Bay of Bengal and is barreling towards the coast of India and Bangladesh.

On Wednesday, it will make a landfall between West Bengal and Bangladesh during afternoon-evening time and will bring heavy rainfall in parts of Odisha, Bengal and Northeast.

       cyclone Amphan showing pattern above Bay of Bengal (image source: https://

Highlights of Amphan

Super Cyclone Amphan is the first cyclonic storm of the 2020 North Indian Ocean cyclone season and the first to form over the Bay of Bengal since the catastrophic 1999 Odisha cyclone.
Currently, the super cyclone is barreling towards the coasts of India and Bangladesh with a wind speed of around 300 kilometers per hour and is expected to cross the coast between the beach town of Digha in West Bengal and Hatiya Island in Bangladesh.

The Indian Meterological Department(IMD), warned that cyclone Amphan will result rainfall in Odisha, West Bengal, Sikkim, Assam and Meghalaya between May 19 and May 21.

Also, IMD said that, the huge storm that cyclone Amphan will bring in its wake is likely to flood certain low-lying areas in West Bengal while the storm could damage the communication lines, roads and railway infrastructure and crops fields too.

Amphans projected path according to Met Models

IMD-GFS: IMD’s model indicates that the cyclone forms  the depression on May16, and then travelsnorthwards on May 17. On May 18, the system will take a northeastwards direction to recurve towards Bay of Bengal of West Bengal and and Bangladesh coast and predicts the Amphan to grow up as a severe category.

            IMD model showing cyclone Amphan

INCOIS: According to country’s ace ocean research agency’s observation, Amphan will make landfall on May 20 in West Bengal and Bangladesh.

INCOS model for cyclone Amphan

NAVGEM(US): The prediction of this US model shows that cyclone Amphan will make landfall and heavy rainfall in West Bengal-Bangladesh.

ICON: This Germany model predicts that Amphan will be hitting Odisha coasts and landfall will be on May 20 in West Bengal-Bangladesh.

   ICON model representing cyclone amphan

Cyclone Amphan weather forecast

According to IMD, cyclone Amphan will result in rainfall in several areas of the east coast as well as parts of Northeast.
The cyclone is expecting to cause flooding in certain parts of West Bengal

West Bengal: Rainfall will begin in West Bengal’s East Medinipur and South and North 24 Parganas district.Intense rainfall is expected in these areas along with West Medinipur, Howrah, Hoogli and Kolkata on May 20.
Odisha: Light to moderate rainfall is expected in coastal Odisha with heavy rainfall in Jagatsinghpur, Kendrapada, Bhadrak, Jajpur, Balasore, Cuttack, Mayurbhanj, khordha and Puri on May 20.

Northeast: Parts of Sikkim, Assam and Meghalaya are likely to witness light to moderate rainfall on May 20 to May 21.

Preparations for cyclone Amphan

   Affected areas by cyclone Amphan

  • Cyclone Amphan comes at a time when the whole country is following social distancing norms to prevent the spread of the pandemic Covid-19.
  • According to the West Bengal Chief Minister, Mamata Banerjee, at least three lakhs people have evacuated from coastal areas of the state.
    Authorities at the Centre and in Odisha and West Bengal have said that they are fully prepared to deal with the cyclone’s outcomes.
    Also, Odisha has a good track record of preparing for cyclone and in evacuating people to safer places.
  • The National Disaster Response Force has deployed 34 teams on the ground level in West Bengal (19) and Odisha(15) with another seven on standby.
  • Rescue and relief teams from the Indian Army and Indian Navy as well as ships and aircrafts of the Navy, Air Force and Coast Guard are also on alert.
  • The IMD has recommended the suspension of all rail and road travel in the affected zones until cyclone Amphan gets over.
  • Other teams for maintenance and restoration of power and telecom infrastructure are also positioned and service providers are asked to ensure the availability of diesel generators so that they can be used to quickly restart damaged cell phone towers.



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