Bhubaneswar: The severe cyclonic storm Yaas formed over east central Bay of Bengal intensified into a very severe cyclonic storm Tuesday and is forecast to hit Odisha coast near Dhamra and Chandabali area Wednesday morning.
Till the time of filing this report, the cyclone was located at about 160 km south-southeast of Paradip and 250 km south-southeast of Balasore. It would be within 30 km of Dhamra at around 5 am, Wednesday. Around noon, Yaas is expected to make landfall between Dharma and Chandbali, said Director General of India Meteorological Department (IMD), Mrutyunjay Mohapatra said.
Under its impact, the wind speed with gale wind speed 155-165 kmph gusting to 185 kmph will prevail over north Odisha and adjoining West Bengal coasts. The cyclonic storm will affect Jagatsinghpur, Kendrapara and Bhadrak districts in Odisha from Wednesday early morning and will subsequently extend to Balasore district. Mayurbhanj district will experience wind speed of 120-130 kmph gusting to 145 kmph from Wednesday early morning till late evening, the IMD said in a bulletin.
Gale wind speed reaching 80-90 kmph gusting to 100 kmph would also prevail in Puri, Cuttack, Khurda, Jajpur and Nayagarh districts, while Ganjam district will witness wind of speed 60-80 kmph gusting to 90 kmph.
As the outer portion of the system has entered the Odisha coast, moderate to heavy rainfall occurred in the coastal areas and adjoining districts. At least 35 blocks recorded over 50 mm rainfall Tuesday.
Moreover, tidal waves of 2-4 meters high above astronomical tide are likely to inundate low-lying areas of Medinipur, Balasore and Bhadrak and about 2 meters above astronomical tide is likely to inundate low lying-low laying areas of South 24 Parganas, Kendrapara and Jagatsinghpur districts at the time of the landfall, the Met department said.
Speaking to the media, Special Relief Commissioner (SRC) PK Jena said the cyclone will make landfall between 4.30 am and 5 am, Wednesday between Dhamra and Balasore. To be precise, the landfall is likely to be between Basudebpur and Bahanaga of Bhadrak district.
The state government has evacuated over 2.5 lakh people from 11 coastal and adjourning districts to safer places till the last report came. Jena said the evacuation process will continue till 9pm tonight and the state government has targeted to shift about 7.5 lakh people to safer places.
Jena said the government is focusing on 77 blocks described as “high intensity” and where the impact of cyclone Yaas will be severe. However, the prevailing Covid-19 pandemic has posed a challenge for evacuation as people are not willing to shift to the cyclone shelters fearing Covid infection.
Meanwhile, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has asked Minister of State, Home, DS Mishra to station at Balsore and monitor the cyclone management work.
Highest-ever number of NDRF teams deployed
New Delhi/ Bhubaneswar: The National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) has earmarked its highest-ever number of teams for deployment in Odisha and West Bengal to undertake relief and rescue operations during cyclone Yaas, its chief SN Pradhan said Tuesday. The federal contingency force has committed a total of 113 teams for deployment in five states and the Union Territory of Andaman and Nicobar Islands which are expected to be affected by the cyclone brewing in the Bay of Bengal. Out of these, 104 teams are deployed on ground while nine have been kept on “high alert” in these states, an NDRF spokesperson said.
No threat to DRDO’s facilities: Official
Balasore/Bhubaneswar: The Integrated Test Range of DRDO has taken various measures to protect its facilities at Chandipur and Abdul Kalam Island in Odisha, which are likely to be affected by cyclone ‘Yaas’, an official said Tuesday. The ITR of the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) has three missile launch pads at Chandipur and one launch complex at Abdul Kalam Island, besides two separate mission control rooms and block houses. The island is 80 nautical miles (110 km) from the ITR, and more likely to be impacted by the cyclone, the official said. The control room and block house, however, have been designed to withstand wind speeds up to 400 km, sources said.