Super cyclone Amphan is now only 700 kilometers away from Bangladesh coastal area with wind speed rising up to 245 kilometers per hour (kph), Bangladesh Meteorological Department said in a special bulletin. As of 9am on Tuesday, the cyclone was located at 845 kilometres southwest of Chittagong port, 795 kilometre southwest of Cox’s Bazar port, 730 south southwest of Mongla port and 700 kilometre south-southwest of Payra port.
It is likely to move towards in the north-northeasterly direction and may cross the Bangladesh coast from Khulna-Chittagong belt between late night of May 19 and evening of May 20. The maximum sustained wind speed within 90 kilometres of the cyclone centre is about 225kph, rising to 245kph in gusts and squalls. The sea will remain very high near the super cyclone centre. Under the influence of the very severe cyclonic storm Amphan and the new moon phase, the low-lying areas of the coastal districts of Satkhira, Khulna, Bagherhat, Jhalokathi, Pirozpur, Borguna, Patuakhali, Bhola, Barishal, Laxmipur, Chandpur, Noakhali, Feni, Chattogram and their offshore islands and chars are likely to be inundated by storm surge of 5-10 feet height above normal astronomical tide.
Maritime ports of Mongla and Payra have been advised to keep hoisted danger signal number seven while maritime ports of Chittagong and Cox’s Bazar have been advised to keep hoisted danger signal number six. Coastal districts of Satkhira, Khulna, Bagherhat, Jhalokathi, Pirozpur, Barguna, Patuakhali, Bhola, Barishal, Laxmipur, Chandpur and their offshore islands and chars will come under danger signal number seven. Noakhali, Feni, Chittagong and Cox’s Bazar their offshore islands and chars will come under danger signal number six.
‘Amphan’ is the first super-cyclonic storm formed in the region in more than 20 years. In 1999, a super-cyclone hit the coast of Odisha, killing more than 9,000 people in India. The super cyclone is expected to cause heavy rains and possible flooding in Cox’s Bazar Rohingya camps, home to more than a million Rohingyas.
‘Amphan’ will pose a ‘dual challenge’ to Bangladesh as the country grapples to contain the spread of highly infectious coronavirus. It will be hard to maintain social distance at the cyclone shelters and if there is any asymptomatic patient, the situation will be disastrous.
A-PAD Bangladesh, CIS and DCH Trust team are ready to respond especially in Golachipa Upazila of Patuakhali district and Cox’s Bazar region within short notice.