Bangladesh raised the storm danger signal on Saturday morning as cyclone ‘Bulbul’ intensified further and was expected to make landfall around the evening.
Low-lying areas of the coastal districts are “likely to be inundated by storm surge of 5-7 feet height above normal astronomical tide” because of the approaching cyclone.
“Maritime ports of Mongla and Payra have been advised to lower danger signal number 7 but instead hoist great danger signal number 10,” the Met Office said in a special bulletin at 8am.
“Coastal districts of Bhola, Barguna, Patuakhali, Barishal, Pirojpur, Jhalakathi, Bagherhat, Khulna, and Satkhira and their offshore islands and chars will come under great danger signal number 10,” it said.
The maritime port of Chattogram was “advised to lower danger signal number 6 but instead hoist great danger signal number 9”. On the other hand, the maritime port of Cox’s Bazar was advised to keep hoisted local warning signal number 4.
Coastal districts of Chattogram, Noakhali, Laxmipur, Feni, Chandpur and their offshore islands and chars will come under great danger signal No 9.
At 6am, cyclone ‘Bulbul’ was about 350 southwest of Mongla port, 375km southwest of Payra port, 525km southwest of Chattogram port, and 510km southwest of Cox’s Bazar port, UNB reports.
The maximum sustained wind speed within 74kms of the very severe cyclone centre is about 130kph, rising to 150kph. It may cross West Bengal-Khulna coast near the Sundarbans by the evening, the Met Office said.
Khulna, Satkhira, Chattogram, Noakhali, Laxmipur, Feni, Chandpur, Barguna, Patuakhali, Barishal, Bhola, Pirojpur, Jhalakathi, and Bagerhat are likely to experience wind speed up to 120kph with heavy to very heavy rainfall during the passage of the storm.
State minister for disaster management and relief Dr Md Enamur Rahman on Friday said the government has taken adequate measures to face ‘Bulbul’. Cyclone shelters have been opened in the coastal regions and holidays of government staff in 13 coastal districts have been cancelled.
Launch services have been suspended since Friday night.
Meanwhile, the Navy said it has kept five ships ready for emergency relief and rescue operations in Khulna, Barishal, Patuakhali, Jhalakathi, and Barguna.