Cyclone Nisarga to bring heavy rains, gusty winds that may cause damage: All you need to know

Updated: Jun 02, 2020, 21:54 IST | mid-day online correspondent | Mumbai

The IMD informed on their Twitter page that the low pressure area will intensify into a cyclonic storm and cross the coastal areas of northern Maharashtra and southern Gujarat on June 3

A biker rides his bike in rain at Kalbhadevi in South Mumbai amid lockdown in the city. Picture/Bipin Kokate
A biker rides his bike in rain at Kalbhadevi in South Mumbai amid lockdown in the city. Picture/Bipin Kokate

Super cyclone Nisarga is expected to make landfall late on Tuesday night or early Wednesday morning in Maharashtra, the India Meteorological Department has issued a Red Alert on June 3 for Mumbai, Thane, Raigad, Palghar, and few other areas and the alert will continue on June 4 for Palghar district.

According to IMD, a deep, low pressure depression that was formed in the Arabian Sea intensified into a severe cyclonic storm that is expected to hit the coastal areas of northern Maharashtra and southern Gujarat between Harihareshwar in Raigad and Daman on Tuesday with a wind speed of 100-110 kmh gusting to 120 kmh.

With Maharashtra already grappling with the surge in COVID-19 cases, the state government wants to ensure that the cyclone does not wreak havoc in the state and has put measures in place along the coast, including Mumbai in view of the approaching cyclone.

How was cyclone 'Nisarga' named

'Nisarga', which means nature, was named by by India's neighbouring country -- Bangladesh. The name was accorded in a list formulated by a group of countries. The naming of cyclones in the Indian Ocean began in 2000 and a formula was agreed in 2004. The next few cyclones will be named Gati (named by India), Nivar (Iran), Burevi (Maldives), Tauktae (Myanmar) and Yaas (Oman), said a report in IANS

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 Warnings by the IMD

The weather department also said that under the influence of the depression, light to moderate rainfall is likely at most places with heavy to very heavy rain at a few places and extremely heavy rains at isolated places over north Konkan and north-central Maharashtra on June 3 and 4. IMD Director General Mrutyunjay Mohapatra on Monday said that the cyclonic storm will affect the coastal districts of Maharashtra, including Mumbai, more than Gujarat and neighbouring states.

Actions by the forces

The weather department issued a warning for fishermen asking them not to venture into the sea until further orders. Moreover, the Indian Coast Guard has been continuously monitoring the situation and sending out warnings about impending adverse weather to merchant vessels and fishermen.

Efforts are also being made to get the boats already sailing in the sea back onto the shore before the cyclone hits the territory.

Palghar Collector Kailas Shinde was quoted by PTI that as many as 577 fishing boats from Palghar had earlier gone out in the sea and till Monday evening, 477 returned. Search is still on for 13 boats that are still out sailing in the sea. On the other hand, the chief of the federal contingency force said on Tuesday that as many as 33 NDRF teams have been deployed in the coastal districts of Maharashtra and Gujarat in view of the impending cyclone. In Thane, officials said that the 252 boats that were out sailing have returned to the shore.

Cyclone Do's and Don'ts

The National Cyclone Risk Mitigation Project (NCRMP) has released a set of precautions for a cyclone

  • Listen to the radio (All India Radio stations give weather warnings).
  • Keep monitoring the warnings. This will help you prepare for a cyclone emergency.
  • Pass the information to others.
  • Ignore rumours and do not spread them; this will help to avoid panic situations.
  • Believe in the official information.
  • When a cyclone alert is on for your area continue normal working but stay alert to the radio warnings.
  • Stay alert for the next 24 hours as a cyclone alert means that the danger is within 24 hours.
  • Get extra food, which can be eaten without cooking. Store extra drinking water in suitably covered vessels.
  • Ensure that your hurricane lantern,torches or other emergency lights are in working condition and keep them handy.
  • Make provision for children and adults requiring special diet.
  • If the centre of the cyclone is passing directly over your house there will be a lull in the wind and rain lasting for half an hour or so.During this time do not go out; because immediately after that, very strong winds will blow from the opposite direction.
  • Switch off the electrical mains in your house.
  • Remain calm.

Information courtesy https://ncrmp.gov.in/

Measures by Maharashtra government

The Maharashtra government has sounded an alert in Mumbai and neighbouring districts in view of the cyclonic storm. The government also took a series of stringent methods to ensure the safety of people and effective treatment for potential casualties.

In the series of measures posted by the office of the chief minister of Maharashtra on Twitter, it was mentioned that people staying in kuccha houses near the coast have been moved to safety and non-COVID-19 hospitals are made available to ensure those hurt by the cyclone is treated properly. The office also said that care is being taken to avoid power outages and precautions are taken in chemical industries in Palghar and Raigad to avoid untoward incidences. Teams are also kept on standby to tackle treefall, landslides, and heavy rains. Moreover, the office also informed on Twitter that people living in the slums in the low-lying areas have been ordered to be evacuated.

As per the prevalence of COVID-19 cases, the government said it would be taking the precautions for the relief and rehabilitation work to ensure the efforts to contain the spread of the virus is under control. Also, a control room set up at the Mantralaya would be operational round the clock, with the armed forces and navy, air force, and the IMD instructed to coordinate accordingly.

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