Cyclonic storm Remal to cross West Bengal, Bangladesh coast on May 26 midnight

The cyclonic storm intensifies over Bay of Bengal, set to cross Bangladesh and West Bengal coasts with strong winds.

Updated - May 26, 2024 12:32 am IST

Published - May 25, 2024 10:13 pm IST - KOLKATA

Kolkata Police alert people of the impending Cyclone Remal, at Nimtala ghat in Kolkata on May 25, 2024.

Kolkata Police alert people of the impending Cyclone Remal, at Nimtala ghat in Kolkata on May 25, 2024. | Photo Credit: ANI

The deep depression over east-central Bay of Bengal on Saturday evening intensified into a cyclonic storm “Remal” and is likely to cross Bangladesh and adjoining West Bengal coasts by Sunday midnight.

The weather pattern is likely continue to move nearly northwards and intensify into a severe cyclonic storm by Sunday morning. It is expected to cross the coasts between Sagar Island (West Bengal) and Khepupara (Bangladesh) around Sunday midnight with a wind speed of 110-120 kmph gusting to 135 kmph.

A special bulletin by the India Meteorological Department (IMD) on Saturday said: “The deep depression over east central Bay of Bengal moved nearly northward with a speed of 12 kmph during the past 6 hours, intensified into cyclonic Storm “Remal” (pronounced as “Re-Mal”) and lay centered at 1730 hrs IST of today, the 25th May, 2024 over the north & adjoining east central Bay of Bengal near latitude 18.8°N and longitude 89.5°E.”

Cyclone Remal: Follow LIVE updates on May 25, 2024

The IMD has issued orange alert for light to moderate rainfall in Kolkata, Howrah, Nadia, Jhargram, North 24 Parganas, South 24 Parganas and Purba Medinipur districts of the State. According to the weather office, it has predicted “heavy (7–11 cm) to very heavy rain (12 - 20 cm) at a few places over North and South 24 Parganas, East Midnapore, Kolkata, Howrah and Hooghly districts” of southern Bengal. The IMD has predicted extremely heavy rain (over 20 cm) at one or two places to be very likely over North 24 Parganas, South 24 Parganas and East Midnapore districts.

The weather office has also cautioned about gale wind speed reaching 60-70 kmph gusting to 80 kmph from Saturday evening. “It would increase further and extend to adjoining areas of North Bay of Bengal becoming gale wind speed reaching 70-80 kmph gusting to 90 kmph from evening of today, the 25th May and 100-110 kmph gusting to 120 kmph over North Bay of Bengal from morning and 110-120 kmph gusting to 135 kmph from evening of 26th May,” the special bulletin said.

A red alert has been issued for fishermen advising them not to venture into the sea along and off West Bengal coast and deep sea area of the Bay of Bengal till May 27. The IMD has predicted a storm surge of about one meter above astronomical tide and this is likely to inundate low-lying areas of coastal West Bengal and around the time of landfall.

NDRF, Coast Guard teams on alert

The IMD has predicted damage to thatched houses/huts, breaking of tree branches, and uprooting of trees. Nine disaster relief teams of the Indian Coast Guard have been kept on standby at Haldia, Paradip, Gopalpur and Fraserganj. The National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) has stationed 12 teams across coastal areas of West Bengal.

While elections to the sixth phase across five districts of West Bengal was held on Saturday without the weather playing spoilsport, elections to nine seats in and around Kolkata and coastal Sundarbans is scheduled on June 1. An alert has been sounded by the West Bengal government in coastal areas of South 24 Parganas like Sagar, Kakdwip and Namkhana and district officials of South 24 Parganas held a meeting during the day.

All tourism activities have been suspended in South 24 Parganas, North 24 Parganas and Purba Medinipur and evacuation of people from low-lying coastal areas of the three districts have started.

Syama Prasad Mookerjee Port in Kolkata has announced that it will suspend all cargo and container handling operations for 12 hours from Sunday evening in view of the forecast of a cyclonic storm. The authorities of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose International Airport at Kolkata held a meeting in view of the impending cyclone.

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