Cyclone Yaas makes landfall on north Odisha-West Bengal coast, low-lying areas in Balasore and Bhadrak districts inundated

Published : May 26, 2021 17:24 IST

Water enters a village in Bahanaga panchayat in Balasore district after Cyclone Yass makes landfall. Photo: BISWARANJAN ROUT

The cyclonic storm Yaas crossed the north Odisha-West Bengal coast on May 26, inundating low-lying coastal areas in Balasore and Bhadrak districts.

The landfall of Yaas started at around 9 a.m. in the stretch north of Dhamra and south of Balasore and it continued until 1 p.m.

According to the Meteorological Centre, Bhubaneswar, the wind speed of the storm was in the range of 130-140 kmph during landfall.

The cyclone was expected to weaken gradually and cross Mayurbhanj district with a wind speed of 100 kmph and cross Jharkhand around midnight.

Although it has been raining in several coastal districts for the past three days under the influence of the cyclone, north Odisha received heavy to very heavy rain.

According to Pradeep Jena, Special Relief Commissioner (SRC), the highest rainfall of 304 mm was recorded at Kusumi in Mayurbhanj district, followed by 288 mm in Chandbali in Bhadrak district, 275 mm in Rajnagar in Kendrapara district and 271 mm in Erasama in Jagatsinghpur district.

Before the cyclone made its landfall, the State had already evacuated about 5.8 lakh people, including 1.52 lakh in Balasore and 1.20 lakh in Bhadrak district. Those who had taken shelter in cyclone shelters were provided food by the administration. COVID-19 protocol was maintained during evacuation and at the cyclone shelters.

Despite the administration’s efforts to ensure that there was no loss to life, there was one fatality in Keonjhar district and another was critically injured in Balasore district. However, 10 fishermen, whose boat had capsized in the mouth of the Jatadhari river in Jagatsinghpur district, were rescued by a National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) team late on May 25 evening.

According to reports, scores of trees were uprooted at many places in Jagatsinghpur, Kendrapara, Bhadrak, Balasore and Mayurbhanj districts. Teams from the NDRF and the Odisha Disaster Rapid Action Force (ODRAF) were clearing the roads in those regions.

Pradeep Jena said that no major damage was caused to electricity installations in the districts of Jagatsinghpur, Kendrapara and Jajpur and that power supply would resume in these areas after inspection. The restoration work in Balasore and Bhadrak district would start without delay, he added.

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