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Heavy rain, strong winds and storm surge hit Bengal as Cyclone Yaas makes landfall

 By HT Correspondent

PUBLISHED ON MAY 26, 2021 09:37 AM IST

IMD officials had warned that as cyclone Yaas has coincided with the perigean spring tide, which occurs on full moon, coastal districts in the state could witness storm surge of 2m – 4m over and above the astronomical tide

 

Heavy rain, strong winds and storm surge have started battering the coastal districts of West Bengal since early morning on Wednesday as very severe cyclone Yaas made a landfall around 9am.

 

The meteorological department’s regional office in Kolkata had earlier predicted the landfall around noon. Morning reports said sea and river water gushed into low lying areas, inundating many places along the coast, such as Digha and Shankharpur in East Midnapore district, which shares its border with Odisha.

 

In the Sunderban delta, which comprises 102 islands, breaches in embankments were reported from some islands including Gosaba, allowing the saline river water to enter the villages.

 

In some areas, river water entered the villages after its level shot up because of the storm surge and the tide.

 

In Kolkata, strong winds gusting up to 60km per hour and rain were recorded since morning. The winds were expected to get stronger with the landfall of the cyclone.

 

IMD officials had warned that as cyclone Yaas has coincided with the perigean spring tide, which occurs on full moon, coastal districts in the state could witness storm surge of 2m – 4m over and above the astronomical tide (spring tide).

 

“The maximum damage would be caused by the storm surge this time. On May 26, when the cyclone hits, there is also the spring tide. Damage would be the maximum in the coastal districts of East Midnapore and South 24 Parganas,” Sanjib Banerjee, deputy director general of IMD’s regional office in Kolkata, had said on Tuesday.

 

Till Tuesday evening, the state government had evacuated around 1.1 million people from vulnerable areas in the districts and shifted them to around 4,000 cyclone shelters and school buildings being used as relief centres.

 

“The cyclone could affect around 20 districts while the three coastal districts of East Midnapore, North 24 Parganas and South 24 Parganas, along with Kolkata, would bear the main brunt,” chief minister Mamata Banerjee had told reporters on Tuesday late evening.

 

The CM, along with some top bureaucrats and cabinet ministers, spend the night at the control room set up at the state secretariat. Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar also visited the control room in the evening. The state government has deployed a 300,000-people strong force, from bureaucrats to civic volunteers and home guards, for disaster management and relief work.

 

(Source: https://www.hindustantimes.com/india-news/heavy-rain-strong-winds-and-storm-surge-hit-bengal-as-cyclone-yaas-makes-landfall-101622002032703.html)