Hadn’t been long since the severe impacts of Tauktae have been overcome that a new disaster is on the head. Cyclone Yaas is now gearing up to hit East India and cause havoc.
Over the last ten days, the cyclone season has become quite aggressive over the warm North Indian Ocean. A low-pressure system is forming over the Bay of Bengal, less than a week after Cyclone Tauktae wreaked havoc on India’s west coast. It is expected to build into a strong cyclone.
Cyclone Yaas is expected to strike the east coast on May 26-27, according to the India Meteorological Department (IMD).
According to IMD, a low-pressure region is expected to form around May 22 over the north Andaman Sea and the adjacent east-central Bay of Bengal. It will most likely become a depression on May 23 and a cyclonic storm on May 24. Because the low-pressure system has yet to form, it is too early to predict the exact trajectory and likely landfall area. According to estimates from the India Meteorological Department, the system would travel northwestwards and hit the shores of West Bengal and Odisha on Wednesday, May 26. (IMD).
“According to the most recent projections, a major cyclone will form over the northern Bay of Bengal by next Tuesday, moving northwest to the north-northwest. “A lot of solutions point to a Very Severe Cyclone on the Indian scale,” says Leon Brown, The Weather Company’s Head of Global Forecasting Operations.
Both the IMD GFS and the European model ECMWF forecast a wide variety of probable cyclone routes. The storm is expected to pass the coast around the Odisha-West Bengal borderline on Wednesday morning, according to forecasts. On Wednesday, the storm is forecast to reach a peak intensity of Very Severe Cyclonic Storm, with a maximum wind speed of roughly 130 kmph off the coast of West Bengal.
Despite cyclones in the Bay of Bengal are notoriously lethal, the approaching storm is expected to be less damaging than last year’s pre-monsoon storm, Cyclone Amphan. In May 2020, the Super Cyclone Amphan ripped across West Bengal, killing 128 people and damaging property worth 1 lakh crores—the worst damage ever caused by a cyclone in the North Indian Ocean.
Even though the strength of possible Cyclone Yaas will be smaller than that of Amphan, it is expected to have a substantial impact in terms of storm surge and coastal flooding. Over the weekend, a low-pressure system building over the North Andaman Sea will bring mild to moderate rainfall to the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, with isolated severe rainfall.
Cyclone Yaas is expected to form and intensify over the Bay of Bengal due to a number of causes. The southwest monsoon is expected to move through the south Andaman Sea and the adjacent southeast Bay of Bengal by Friday, May 21. As the monsoon approaches, southwesterly winds have begun to intensify and spread across the region, and this will remain until May 24.
Fishermen have been advised not to travel into the central Bay of Bengal’s deep water area from May 23 to 25, or into the north Bay of Bengal along and off the coast of Odisha from May 24-27. Fishermen who have already gone out to sea in the deep sea have been encouraged to return by May 23.