Cyclone Nisarga: What you need to know

A family in Navi Mumbai looks for shelter during rainfall ahead of Cyclone Nisarga's landfall/ Image source: PTI

Amidst the fight against Coronavirus pandemic and struggling to recover from cyclone Amphan, India witnesses another super cyclonic storm named NISARGA which hits Maharashtra and South Gujarat.

According to Indian Meteorological Department Cyclone Nisarga has made landfall in Alibaug with wind speeds of up to 110 kph accompanied with torrential rainfall leading to uprooting of trees and many electricity poles as well as damage to various homes.

However, the Cyclone Nisarga is not as strong as the previous one, Super Cyclone Amphan, which reached a huge intensity of 240 km/h and wreaked havoc in West Bengal and Bangladesh. Nisarga is likely to have a peak intensity of around 120 km/h just before the landfall.

Many trees have fallen in areas like Roha, Revdanda, Srivardhana and also on Mumbai Pune Expressway and flight services have been suspended. The concerned authorities involving the Coast Guards, NDRF, Municipal Corporation have taken several evacuation and preparedness strategies to control the situations in the vulnerable and affected areas.

A series of special arrangements have been taken by the Maharashtra Government for Nuclear Plants and Chemical Plants in Mumbai and neighbourhood districts of Palghar, Thane and Raigad and these areas have not faced any damage due to cyclone. Indian Coast Guard Region (West) have mobilized 8 disaster relief teams.

Around 10,000 people were evacuated earlier to schools and colleges turned evacuation Centres and red alert was signalled to the people living in the coastal areas especially the fishermen. In order to respond to humanitarian assistance, instructions were issued by the state officials to ensure that the cyclone causes minimal damage. About 43 NDRF teams were deployed in the 2 states of which 21 are in Maharashtra and 16 in Gujarat. Nearly 1 lakh people have been evacuated from the cyclone spot as per the NDRF chief.

Special care has been taken for the evacuation of coronavirus patients. Several low-lying areas in Maharashtra are witnessing problems related to waterlogging and mobile services are disrupted and the Municipal bodies have been receiving emergency calls related to such issues.

Around 3,000 people have been evacuated in Daman. BMC has also called for the structural inspection of temporary COVID-19 Health Centres. PM Modi spoke to the Chief Ministers of Maharashtra, Gujarat and administrative bodies of Daman and Dadar and assured full possible support.

No one is allowed to come out in public places along the Mumbai coastline and anyone caught violating will have to face criminal action. No major impact has been so far witnessed in Southern Gujarat.

As of now, three casualties have been reported from Maharastra. As per the officials considering the trajectory of the cyclone, the threat is lessened and the intensity is a bit weakened but next few hours is very crucial and the Disaster Relief Teams are coordinating with each other addressing the problems of the people.

Follow NDRF twitter handle for the live updates

Image source: NDTV

What is landfall?

A landfall, in simple words, is the storm moving over the land, after its intensification in the ocean (heat source). Therefore, a tropical cyclone is said to make landfall when the centre of the storm (eye) moves across the coast. The tropical cyclones are usually formed in warmer seas. As per the US National Hurricane Centre, definition, it is ‘the intersection of the surface centre of a tropical cyclone with a coastline.’

The strongest winds of the cyclone are not at the centre but on the immediate surroundings of the eye of the storm, usually stronger on one side of the centre. Therefore, very high wind speed can be experienced over the land area when the cyclone is near the land—even when it does not make landfall. It can be vice versa, where the cyclone can make landfall but leave the strongest wind over the ocean.

The landfall usually brings with it high-speed winds, severe storm surge and torrential downpour, which can have a severe impact on the region.

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The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Kootneeti Team

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Jyoti Singh

Jyoti Singh is a Former Journalism Intern at The Kootneeti

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