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Cyclone Remal to make landfall today, Kolkata airport suspends flight operations

According to the IMD, West Bengal and several Northeastern states, including Tripura, Assam, Nagaland, and Manipur, are expected to experience rainfall and strong winds. The regional meteorological center in Tripura also issued a warning about adverse weather conditions beginning on May 26.

Edited By: Arushi Jaiswal @JaiswalArushi Kolkata Updated on: May 26, 2024 6:59 IST
Cyclone Remal
Image Source : PTI Clouds hover over 'Muri Ganga' River ahead of the landfall of cyclone Remal in South 24 Parganas district

Cyclone Remal: The India Meteorological Department (IMD) issued a severe warning regarding Cyclone Remal, which is expected to impact the northeastern region and Bangladesh and make landfall in West Bengal today (May 26). This is the first cyclone in the Bay of Bengal this pre-monsoon season.

A low-pressure system over the Bay of Bengal has intensified into cyclonic storm Remal and is expected to make landfall between West Bengal’s Sagar Island and Bangladesh’s Khepupara at midnight on Sunday. The weather department said the cyclone will bring extremely heavy rainfall and strong winds to coastal regions of Bangladesh and West Bengal on May 26. 

Remal to  intensify into severe cyclonic storm

As per the IMD, the storm is likely to intensify further into a severe cyclonic storm by Sunday morning and is expected to cross the West Bengal and adjoining Bangladesh coasts between Sagar Island and Khepupara with wind speeds of 110 to 120 kmph, gusting to 135 kmph around midnight on Sunday, the IMD said.

"The CS "Remal" over North BoB  about 290 km S SE of Sagar Islands(WB) 300 km S  SW of Khepupara(Bangladesh) and 320 km S SE of Canning (WB). To intensify into a severe cyclonic storm in next 06 hours and cross between Bangladesh and adjoining WB coasts around 26 midnight as SCS," the IMD said in its bulletin at 5:52 am on Sunday.

Orange alert issued 

An orange alert has been issued for Kolkata, Howrah, Nadia, and Purba Medinipur districts, forecasting wind speeds of 80 to 90 kmph, gusting up to 100 kmph, along with heavy to very heavy rainfall at some places on May 26 and 27. In north Odisha, heavy rains are expected in the coastal districts of Balasore, Bhadrak, and Kendrapara on May 26-27, with Mayurbhanj likely to experience heavy precipitation on May 27.

The IMD has warned of localised flooding and significant damage to vulnerable structures, power and communication lines, kutcha roads, crops, and orchards in South and North 24 Parganas districts of West Bengal. Residents in the affected areas have been advised to stay indoors for safety.

Kolkata airport suspend flight operations 

In anticipation of the potential impact of Cyclone Remal, Kolkata airport authorities have decided to suspend flight operations for 21 hours starting from noon on Sunday. According to an Airports Authority of India (AAI) spokesperson, a total of 394 flights, both international and domestic, are set to be cancelled during the 21-hour suspension period at Kolkata airport.

“In view of cyclone Remal's impact on the coastal region of West Bengal, including Kolkata, a meeting was held with the stakeholders and it has been decided to suspend flight operations from 1200 IST on May 26 to 0900 IST on May 27 due to predicted heavy winds and heavy to very heavy rainfall in Kolkata,” NSCBI Airport Director C Pattabhi said in a statement.

The Met office has issued a warning of extremely heavy rainfall in the coastal districts of West Bengal and north Odisha on May 26 and 27, with parts of northeast India expected to experience heavy precipitation on May 27 and 28. 

A storm surge up to 1.5 meters high is anticipated to inundate low-lying areas of coastal West Bengal and Bangladesh during the landfall. 

Fishermen have been advised not to venture into the north Bay of Bengal until the morning of May 27. A red alert has been issued for the coastal districts of South and North 24 Parganas in West Bengal for May 26 and 27, predicting extremely heavy rain in some areas.

Air India issues advisory 

"Kolkata airport will remain closed from 1200 Hrs of 26 May to 0900 Hrs of 27 May due to severe cyclone conditions. All Air India flights to and from Kolkata are cancelled during this period," Air India said in an X post. 

"Passengers booked on these flights are requested to check our website for further updates," the airline added. 

(With PTI inputs)

Also Read: Cyclone Remal to hit West Bengal, Odisha: Precautionary measures you can take to remain safe

Also Read: Cyclone Remal to make landfall on Sunday in West Bengal, Bangladesh at wind speed of 102 KM/hr

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