Fresh Bay of Bengal cyclone ‘Madi’ is forecast to move mostly north over water along a track 500 km east of Tamil Nadu coast for the next two days.

The cyclone is forecast to intensify at least two rounds into a very severe cyclonic storm in the water.

SLOW PACE

Since the storm is located some distance into the open Bay, it may not affect the coast in any significant manner .

But the very slow movement – even grinding to halt briefly in between — has confounded weather models as to how it could possibly behave going forward. It could run into a battleground of various waves in the higher levels of the atmosphere and is therefore vulnerable to competing flows of steering winds.

WEAKENING TREND

Short-to-medium forecasts had earlier suggested that ‘Madi’ could break away from the northerly track and be steered north-northeast over the open Bay.

These forecasts also tended to take the system for a landfall over the Bangladesh-Myanmar coast.

But latest assessments are that ‘Madi’ may not go the distance, get exposed to the competing flows in the higher atmosphere and wear out over the waters. Increasing vertical wind shear from criss-crossing high-velocity winds will unsettle the ‘storm tower’ and crumble it. US Joint Typhoon Warning Centre projects that the weakening phase will begin right after the next two days.

RAIN FORECAST

India Met Department has said that coastal areas of Tamil Nadu, Puducherry, and south coastal Andhra Pradesh could witness thundershowers for next two days. Fishermen along these areas have been advised to be cautious while venturing into the sea and should not venture into the deep sea.

vinson.kurian@thehindu.co.in

(This article was published on December 6, 2013)
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