Cyclone ‘Khai Muk’ builds over Bay of Bengal

November 15th, 2008 - 2:01 pm ICT by IANS  

Dhaka, Nov 15 (IANS) Exactly a year after Cyclone Sidr left a wide swathe of destruction, Bangladesh was Saturday facing grim prospects of being hit by Cyclone Khai Muk, building over the Bay of Bengal’s south-western reaches off India’s Andhra Pradesh coast. The cyclone is likely to intensify further and move in a northwesterly direction, and is likely to cross Andhra Pradesh coast near Machilipatnam by this noon, Star Online said.

It was currently centred about 1,265 km southwest of Chittagong Port, 1,210 km southwest of Cox’s Bazaar Port and 1,100 km southwest of Mongla Port at about 3.00 a.m.

Maximum sustained wind speed within 54 km of the cyclone centre is about 60 km per hour rising to 80 km per hour in gusts or squalls. The sea will remain rough, said a special Met Office bulletin.

The Bangladeshi ports of Chittagong, Cox’s Bazaar and Mongla have been advised to hoist distant warning number two.

All fishing boats and trawlers over north Bay and deep sea have been advised to remain close to the coast and proceed with caution till further notice. They are also advised not to venture into the deep sea, United News of Bangladesh (UNB) news agency reported.

Bangladesh’s southern parts were hit by Cyclone Sidr Nov 15 last year, killing over 4,000 persons and devastating crops, homes and fish over half a million hectares.

While international relief poured in, the country faced rice shortage caused by crop failure and had to import 400,000 tonnes of rice from India.

Media reports Saturday carried reports of victims of Sidr, many of whom complained of not receiving help to rebuild their homes and resume normal life in the fields or on the sea.

Disaster-prone Bangladesh has faced an estimated 80 serious cyclones over the past couple of centuries, besides flooding and landslide of its river systems.

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