Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Phyan, first cyclonic storm to reach Mumbai in 43 years

PUNE: Cyclone Phyan, which crossed the Konkan as well as the Mumbai region on Wednesday, was the first cyclonic storm in the region in November
for 43 years.

"This kind of storm is not very common in November," said A B Mazumdar, deputy director general meteorology, India Meteorological Department (IMD). "The last such storm in November was in 1966," he added.

Phyan was the result of a deep depression over the east central Arabian Sea which covered into a storm by Tuesday night and then moved towards Mumbai on Wednesday.

"The cyclone will move towards the sea again. Its intensity will weaken in 48 hours and rainfall should lessen over the next two days," Mazumdar added.

As per IMD data for the last 100 years, November 1946 saw three cyclonic storms pass through the region, 1947 and 1948 had one storm each and earlier, in 1912, there was one cyclonic storm in November in the region.

Tracking the cyclone, Mazumdar said that there was a deep depression over the east central Arabian Sea on Tuesday morning. This system moved in a north north-easterly direction at 5.30 pm on Tuesday. It then moved northwards again and further intensified into cyclonic storm Phyan. At 11.30 pm on Tuesday, Phyan was situated about 300 km west southwest of Goa. It then moved north north-eastwards and moved about 250 km south southwest of Mumbai at 8.30 am on Wednesday. By 5.30 pm the cyclone was moving 100 km to the north east of Mumbai.

"The intensity of the cyclone has now reduced," said Mazumdar. "It will have a northeasterly movement in the next 24 hours."

When asked what the likely position of the cyclone would be on Thursday, Mazumdar said, "The cyclone will be placed around Madhya Pradesh. It will further weaken and will be defused in the next 48 hours."

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