New Delhi: Close on the heels of extremely severe cyclonic storm Amphan, another cyclone is brewing over the Arabian Sea. A low pressure area has formed over the southeast and adjoining east central Arabian Sea and the Met department has said it is likely to intensify into a cyclone by June 2.
According to domestic and international forecasting models, if it intensifies into a cyclonic storm, it will move towards North Maharashtra and South Gujarat by June 2.
“It (the weather system) is very likely to move nearly northwards initially till 2nd June morning and then recurve north-northeastwards and reach near north Maharashtra and south Gujarat coasts around the morning of June 3,” the India Meteorological Department’s (IMD) pre-cyclone forecast bulletin said.
The (IMD) has also issued heavy rain warnings for Karantaka coast beginning Sunday up to Monday. It has issued an orange alert warning for very heavy rains from June 3 onward in Mumbai and Thane and a red alert warning for extremely heavy rains in Palghar between June 3 and June 4. This means that Mumbai and Thane city could receive between 100-150 mm of rainfall from June 3 onward and Palghar district may receive between 150-200mm rains in the same period.
Ratnagiri, Sindhudurg and Raigad districts in Konkan will also receive heavy rainfall from Monday onward. In Gujarat, IMD has issued rainfall warnings for Anand, Surat, Navsari, Vapi, Bharuch from June 3 onward.
Not even a fortnight has passed since Cyclonic Storm Amphan made landfall in Sagar Islands, West Bengal, on May 21. Amphan was the first cyclonic storm to intensify into a super cyclone since the 1999 super cyclone that devastated Odisha, killing 10,000 people. Amphan eventually weakened into an extremely severe cyclonic storm during landfall.
Like the low-pressure area that had developed prior to Amphan, even the current one over Arabian Sea is likely to intensify fast, suggesting warm temperatures and highly favourable atmospheric conditions, IMD scientists said. The low pressure area formed over Arabian Sea on Sunday morning and IMD’s forecast expects it to intensify into a cyclone in just 48 hours.
“Currently, conditions are favourable for the monsoon. That is feeding the low pressure area and warm sea surface temperatures of 30-31 degree Celsius over the Arabian Sea are also aiding formation of a cyclone. Around the time of onset of monsoon, we usually see such kind of wind circulation and atmospheric conditions,” said Mrutyunjay Mohapatra, Director General, India Meteorological Department (IMD).
Mumbai, which is already going through a crisis due to the coronavirus pandemic, is gearing up and IMD officials have already briefed the state’s top officials.
“We have briefed the Chief Secretary, Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation Commissioner and secretary Disaster Management about our forecasts and the rainfall Maharashtra coast is likely to receive due to these weather conditions. As per current forecasts, the cyclone if it forms is likely to edge close to Mumbai, hence it will receive heavy rains,” said KS Hosalikar, Deputy Director General, IMD Mumbai.