Bangladesh braces itself for `Cyclone Aila’

May 25th, 2009 - 4:31 pm ICT by ANI  

Dhaka, May 25 (ANI): Residents in Bangladesh said Monday that they were bracing themselves to meet the damage likely to be caused by “Cyclone Aila”as it crosses the Bay of Bengal.

The national meteorological department warned people that they could expect a storm packing winds of up to 70 km per hour, with wind gusts of up to 90km (56 miles) per hour.

Currently, it was located 435 km southwest of Chittagong.

The maritime ports of Chittagong, Cox’s Bazar and Mongla have been advised to hoist local warning Signal 4, the New Age daily reported on Monday.

According to the paper, all fishing boats and trawlers in the north Bay have been advised to remain in shelter till further notice.

River ports imposed restriction on the plying of vessels of less than 65 feet in length in the evening.

Reports reaching from coastal region said sea and river estuaries were very rough with waves rising up to seven to eight feet.

More than 200 trawlers with more than 3,000 fishermen on board could not get back to the shore because of high waves, according to the Mohipur-Alipur Fish Warehouse Association of Patuakhali and the Patharghata Fish Warehouse Association of Barguna.

The food and disaster management ministry has cancelled leaves of all persons connected with disaster management.

The ministry has also asked all the volunteers to remain alert to the situation.

District administrations have opened control rooms to monitor the cyclone’s development.Bangladesh Red Crescent Society volunteers and medical teams have been kept on standby for emergencies.

The Dhaka Met Office forecast that rain or thundershowers accompanied by temporary gusty to squally wind is likely over many places in Barisal, Khulna and Chittagong divisions and over one or two places in Rajshahi, Dhaka and Sylhet divisions with moderately heavy rainfalls in places in Khulna, Barisal and Chittagong divisions.

Day temperature might fall by one to two degrees Celsius across the country.This is the second storm in the Bay of Bengal in less than one month. Several people were killed and hundreds of thatched houses destroyed at the country’s Cox’s Bazar on April 17. (ANI)

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