Cyclone Hudhud threatens Odisha, AP

Cyclone Hudhud threatens Odisha, AP

Cyclone Hudhud, which is heading for the South Odisha and North Andhra Pradesh coastline, may be as severe as Cyclone Phailin that struck the same area last year though the wind speed intensity is estimated to be less. 

Initial assessments made by the India Meteorological Department suggest Hudhud is likely to cross the coast between Gopalpur in south Odisha’s Ganjam district and Vishakhapatnam around noon on October 12. 

The wind speed of the system during landfall is likely to be 140-150 kmph, while Phailin crossed over at a speed of 210-220 kmph last October. 

Coincidentally, Phailin also hit land at Gopalpur last year on October 12. 

“The system has already turned into a cyclonic storm from deep depression and has crossed the Andaman coast. It will convert into a severe cyclonic storm in the next 24 hours,” said director of Odisha’s Met department Sarat Chandra Sahu. 

“It may subsequently develop into a very severe cyclonic storm before crossing the coast between Gopalpur and Vishakhapatnam around noon of October 12.“According to the preliminary assessment, the wind speed of the system during landfall will be around 140 km per hour,” he noted. The cyclone may trigger heavy rain over Odisha between October 11 and 13. 

Heavy rain is likely to lash coastal and southern Odisha on October 11 and 12. It may spread to the rest of the state on October 13, the Met director said.  The cyclone warning has prompted Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik to chair a meeting of high officials on Wednesday morning to review the preparations. He told reporters after the meeting that all departments have prepared contingency plans to tackle the fallout of the cyclone. 

 “All the preparations have been made like they were during last year’s Phailin. Departments have made their contingency plans ready to face the situation”, Patnaik said. 

The state government has issued cyclone warning in half of the 30 districts and cancelled leaves of government employees in all districts. 

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