Super Cyclone Phailin Lashes East India

(Photo: AP)

Super Cyclone Phailin hit the east coast of India at around 2:30 am (AEST) and caused massive damage to the impoverished areas.  At least 5 people were confirmed dead.

Classified as Category 5, the cyclone was seen on the satellite as half the size of India and considered as one of the super cyclones to hit the region.

According to reports, the cyclone’s 220 kph gusty winds and strong rains forced the evacuation of almost 500,000 people from the low-lying areas in the states of Orissa and Andhra Pradesh.

There has been extensive damage to properties, power lines, trees, farmland and fishing hamlets.

The government has been utilizing its National Disaster Reponse Force for the relief operation and medical mission in the storm devastated areas.

“We believe communities are better prepared than they were when the devastating cyclone hit in 1999,” said Kunal Shah, head of World Vision emergency team in India.

The super cyclone swept through the Bay of Bengal and headed to the east coast of India.  Here are some interesting facts about the Bay of Bengal.

  • It is known to be the largest bay in the world with an area of 839,000 square miles and width of 1,000 miles.
  • The countries located along its coast are India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Burma and part of Thailand.
  • Two of the biggest ports in the world are located in the bay namely, Chittagong (Bangladesh) and Chennai (India).
  • According to history, the Bay of Bengal is known for the formation of deadliest storms and occasional tsunamis.
  • A cyclone that is formed over the Bay of Bengal is comparable to a hurricane in the Atlantic.
  • The cyclone season is from April to November
  • During the summer months of June to September, water spouts occur frequently in the bay.

Devastating cyclones formed in the Bay of Bengal

  • May 2008 – Cyclone Nargis (Myanmar); 138,000  deaths
  • October 1999 – Cyclone Orissa (Eastern India); 10,000 deaths
  • April 1991 – (Bangladesh); 139,000 deaths
  • November 1977 – (Eastern India)  14,000 – 50,000 deaths
  • November 1970 – (East Pakistan) 300,000 deaths

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Interesting Facts about India

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