Agri Business

Weather: From Sri Lanka, cyclone 'Burevi' to head for South TN coast

Vinson Kurian Thiruvananthapuram | Updated on December 02, 2020 Published on December 02, 2020

The odd forecast tends to take cyclone 'Burevi' straight West from the Gulf of Mannar into Virudhunagar-Sivakasi area in South Tamil Nadu and further into southern Kerala into Thursday and Friday.   -  The Weather Company

Landfall likely by Thursday night/Friday morning

Cyclone 'Burevi' lay centred over South-West Bay of Bengal about 110 km East of Trincomalee (Sri Lanka); 330 km East-South-East of Pamban (India) and 520 km nearly East-North-East of Kanniyakumari (India) on Wednesday afternoon, an 'Orange Message' from India Meteorological Department (IMD) for South Tamil Nadu and South Kerala issued at 4.40 pm the same day said.

An 'Orange' message implies advice to stay prepared because of an increased likelihood of extremely bad weather, which could potentially cause travel delays, road and rail closures, and interruption of power supply. People need to be prepared to change plans and protect themselves, their family and community from the impact of the severe weather based on forecasts. There could be a risk to life and property.

Will remain a cyclone all the way

'Burevi' was expected to intensify further later into the evening, but not quiet to the next level of a severe cyclone. Instead, it would move West-North-West to cross the Sri Lanka Coast to the North of Trincomalee (more to the North than expected earlier) by night for the first landfall as a cyclone with wind speeds of 80-90 km/hr gusting to 100 km/hr. Severe cyclone status is reached when winds speed up to the threshold of 89-117 km/hour.

Post the first landfall, the cyclone would continue to move along the same track and emerge into the Gulf of Mannar and adjoining Comorin area on Thursday morning. Buffeted by winds speeding to 70-80 km/r gusting to 90 km/hr (cyclone status retained), it would shift bearing very close to Pamban (South-East Tamil Nadu) around the same noon, the IMD said.

Shift of track and the odd forecast

From here, 'Burevi' would bend its track to West-South-West and slow down on the track even while keeping close to the coast and crossing the South-East Tamil Nadu coast between Kanniyakumari and Pamban during Thursday night or early Friday morning as a cyclone with wind speeds of 70-80 km/hr gusting to 90 km/hr.

By then, it would have sustained as a cyclone for the third day, and its impact on South Coastal districts of Tamil Nadu may commence from the forenoon of Thursday from initially over Ramanathapuram district before gradually spreading towards Kanniyakumari district.

Meanwhile, the odd forecast (in line with the one suggested in the accompanying weather map) does not rule out a straight westerly track for 'Burevi' from the Gulf of Mannar to North of Ramanathapuram in South-East Tamil Nadu. From here, it would move West to Aruppukottai, Sivakasi, and Srivilliputhur in South Tamil Nadu and across the Western Ghats to Ranni, Kozhencherry and Tiruvalla in Pathanamthitta district of Kerala.

Storm surge of up to 3.2 feet warned

The IMD has warned of a storm surge of up to 3.2 feet high above astronomical that could potentially inundate low-lying areas of Ramanathapuram, Thoothukudi, Tirunelveli and Kanniyakumari districts in Tamil Nadu during the time of landfall. Separately, it has advised total suspension of fishing operation from today (Wednesday) to Saturday over the neighbouring sea areas.

Kanniyakumari, Tirunelveli, Thoothukudi and Ramanathapuram districts in South Tamil Nadu and Thiruvananthapuram, Kollam, Pathanamthitta and Alappuzha districts in South Kerala should stay alert to the risk of damage to thatched huts and power and communication lines. Some damage is possible for paddy crops, banana and papaya trees and orchards. Seawater could seep into the low-lying areas once kutcha embankments give in.

Extremely heavy rainfall

The Regional Meteorological Centre, Chennai, has forecast extremely heavy rain over the Sivaganga, Ramanathapuram, Thoothukudi, Tirunelveli, Tenkasi and Kanyakumari districts and heavy to very heavy rain over Pudukottai, Thanjavur, Tiruvarur, Nagapattinam, Villupuram, Cuddalore, Mayiladuthurai districts and Puducherry and Karaikal area as well as over Kerala. Heavy rain is likely to occur at isolated places over Kancheepuram and Chengalpattu districts of Tamil Nadu.

The IMD, Delhi, has forecast heavy to very heavy rainfall with isolated extremely heavy falls over Thiruvananthapuram, Kollam, Pathanamthitta and Alappuzha districts in South Kerala on Thursday. It would be isolated heavy to very heavy over South Tamil Nadu on Wednesday and Friday and over South Kerala, on Thursday and Friday.

High winds seen around Lanka, TN

Squally winds with speed reaching 45-55 km/hr gusting to 65 km/hr are likely over the Comorin area, the Gulf of Mannar and along and off the Ramanathapuram, Thoothukudi, Tirunelveli and Kanniyakumari districts in South Tamil Nadu and Thiruvananthapuram, Kollam, Pathanamthitta and Alappuzha districts in South Kerala.

They may pick up to 55-65 km/hr gusting to 75 km/hr from Wednesday evening to 70-80 km/hr gusting to 90 km/hr from Thursday forenoon and continue into Friday forenoon. Winds reaching 45-55 km/hr in speed and gusting to 65 km/hr are likely over the Lakshadweep-Maldives area and adjoining South-East Arabian Sea from Thursday for next two days.

Adverse sea conditions

The wind speed would rise to 55-65 kmph gusting to 75 km/hr from this (Wednesday) evening, and 70-80 km/hr gusting to 90 km/hr from Thursday evening till Friday morning ad and decrease after that. The wind speeds may reach 45-55 km/hr gusting to 65 km/hr over the Lakshadweep-Maldives and adjoining South-East Arabian Sea from Thursday morning for next two days.

The sea conditions would be 'rough to very rough' (8-20 ft) over the Comorin area, the Gulf of Mannar and along and off the South Tamil Nadu-Kerala and West Sri Lanka coast on Wednesday and 'very rough to high' on both Thursday and Friday. It would be 'rough to very rough' over Lakshadweep-Maldives and adjoining South-East Arabian Sea on these days. Total suspension of fishing operations has been advised over these stretches during these days.

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Published on December 02, 2020
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