Pics: Facts to know about Cyclone Phailin

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The Cyclone Phailin, that has been described as "very severe" by the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD), is set to batter the Odisha and Andhra Pradseh, with full force, by Saturday evening.

As a result, mass evacuations have taken place in Odisha and Andhra Pradesh. It is expected that it may affect 12 million lives.

The prone areas have been identified as Balasore, Bhadrak, Mayurbhanj, Keonjhar, Dhenkanal, Jajpur, Cuttack, Jagatsinghpur, Kendrapara, Puri, Khurda, Nayagarh, Ganjam and Gajapati districts in Odisha and 600 cyclone shelters have been created to avoid number of fatalities.

In Andhra Pradesh, the state government has issued high alert to six districts located in low-lying areas.

According to the latest updates, The Indian National Centre for Ocean Information Services has issued a fresh high wind-wave alert for various states like Tamil Nadu and West Bengal in connection with Cyclone Phailin.

In past, Cyclone Phailin has affected Thailand, Myanmar and this time it has affected Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Odisha and Andhra coastal areas.

This cyclone was given the name "Phailin" on October 9 after it developed into a powerful cyclonic storm and made its way into Bay of Bengal. After noticing its high intensity, it was compared to Category 1 hurricanes.

But since October 11, it is being seen as an equivalent to category 5 hurricanes.

Since 2004, Asian countries have been naming cyclones. This time, Thailand named it as "Phailin" meaning 'Sapphire' in Thai.

Stronger than Hurricane Katrina

Tropical Cyclone Phailin is considered as stronger than the Hurricane Katrina or may be even worse, that hit the US in 2005 and left at least 1, 833 people dead.

It has been reported that once the cyclone will hit Odisha coastal areas, then, the sea tides are likely to enter the state with tides as high as 600 metres. The US weather forecasters have predicted that at that time, the speed of the winds and tides will be more than 350 km/hour.

Important facts:

1. At the time, when Cyclone Phailin will hit the sea coast, the tides will be around 15 m to 20 metres high.

2. In India, there are two seasons, when cyclone can be expected. First is between April -June and second is between October-December.

3. Annually, more than 80 cyclones emerge across the world. Some are very devastating and cause huge loss to lives and property while many of them ends within the sea, without causing any damage.

4. When cyclone emerges in the Atlantic areas, then it is termed as "Hurricane" while it is called as "cyclone" when it comes in the Indian Ocean.

5. Since the threat of Cyclone Phailin hitting near Odisha, Andhra coastal areas emerged, at least 2 lakh people have been evacuated and they have been provided safe shelters.

6. Cyclone Phailin is being seen as the most dangerous, severe and powerful cyclone from the Indian ocean, that has ever hit India.

Precautionary measures:

- If you are near unsafe location, then please shift yourself along with your family members to the safe cyclone shelters built by the state government.

-Keep all the emergency and help line numbers handy, so that in the hour of need, you can utilise them immediately.

- Stay inside your homes unless, if it is very urgent to go outside. And protect yourself by taking shelter in the strongest part of your house.

- Shield yourself with mattresses or blankets or sit under the table, if cyclone hits your area.

Cyclone Phailin to hit Odisha, Andhra coasts

As cyclonic storm Phailin moved closer to Odisha and Andhra coast, the MET department on Saturday said with wind speed of 210-220 kmph, the tides could rise up to 3.5 meters and sea water could enter 300-600 meters in land.


Cyclone Phailin to hit Odisha, Andhra coasts

According to latest reports, the cyclone is 200 km off the Gopalpur coast which will be the centre of the cyclonic system.



Cyclone Phailin to hit Odisha, Andhra coasts

The Met department has also predicted extremely heavy rains in Andhra Pradesh and Odisha.



Cyclone Phailin to hit Odisha, Andhra coasts

Rains will also lash parts of West Bengal, Chhattisgarh, East UP and Bihar. US experts have described Phailin as the strongest tropical cyclone to affect India in 14 years.





Facts to know about Cyclone Phailin

Most of the evacuated people have been sheltered in 500 specially-built cyclone camps in the two states.

Facts to know about Cyclone Phailin

Each cyclone shelter can accommodate up to 1,500 people while their ground floors may be used as cattle shelters.

Facts to know about Cyclone Phailin

In Odisha, the normal power consumption is around 2,800MW but due to the power cut, it had come down to 1,300MW.

Facts to know about Cyclone Phailin

In Andhra Pradesh, against a normal usage of around 9,700 MW, the suspension in transmission had brought consumption down to 9,200MW.

Facts to know about Cyclone Phailin

Sources said the impact of cyclone 'Phailin' would be highest during the night and gradually come down from dawn.

Facts to know about Cyclone Phailin

Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik asked people not to panic over the situation as the state government was "fully" prepared to face any eventuality.

Facts to know about Cyclone Phailin

The National Disaster Management Authority said it had deployed nearly 2,000 National Disaster Response Force personnel in Andhra Pradesh, Odisha and West Bengal.


Facts to know about Cyclone Phailin

The teams are equipped with satellite phones and wireless sets to maintain communication in case the normal lines are affected due in the cyclone.

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