A category 4 cyclone named Cyclone Fani has made its landfall today at 8:00 am local time in Odisha, India. This is the most severe storm to hit the Indian subcontinent in two decades. CM of Odisha tweeted that more than 1 million people have been evacuated from the vulnerable districts in the last 24hrs.
Authorities have ordered the airport to stay closed. Schools and colleges in Odisha were also shut. Numerous medical personnel have been deployed in the disaster-affected region. About 3,000 shelters have been set up in schools and government buildings to accommodate more than a million people. More than 100,000 dry food packets are ready to be dropped if needed, according to reports.
The speed of the storm has decreased as it reached the coast. It is expected to move northeast to Bangladesh, passing through Kolkata. Officials have requested people not to panic as necessary precautions to ensure no loss of lives were being taken. Though the storm would not be as destructive when it reaches Bangladesh, it could still be disastrous to the communities who live along the Bay of Bengal.
Cyclone Fani: Impact on Nepal
As for its impact on Nepal, Nepal meteorological officials have said that Nepalese people won’t feel the devastating affects of the hurricane. But, it stated, the mountainous region of the eastern part of Nepal should expect some heavy rainfall for the next two days.
Tourists and trekkers in the eastern mountainous region including Mt Everest should be very aware of the impacts of the cyclone though the cyclone will not directly affect Nepal, according to the Department of Hydrology and Meteorology (DoHM). Earlier in October 2014, sudden weather changes caused by the Cyclone Hudhud had triggered an avalanche on Mount Dhaulagiri of Nepal, killing 43 people.
पूर्बी हिमाली क्षेत्रमा ठूलो हिमपात हुन सक्ने हुँदा सो क्षेत्रमा अहिले देखिनै भोलि दिनभरसम्म हेलिकप्टर उडान नगर्नु नगराउनुहुन र पर्यटक एवं यात्रुहरूले सुरक्षित स्थानमा रहनु हुन अनुरोध छ । https://t.co/9K04r5l0gE
— NEOC, MoHA Nepal (@NEOCOfficial) May 3, 2019
Keeping in mind the effects of the weather, the National Emergency Operation Center has issued an update stating, “Since there is a possibility of a heavy snowstorm in the eastern Himalayan region, we request that all helicopter flights be suspended from the time of issuance of this notice till tomorrow. We also request the tourists/travelers visiting the area to stay in a safe place.”
If you want to see what Fani looked like, check this tweet from PIB, India.