Published: Friday, May 17, 2013

Of 7-day journey

Cyclone Mahasen’s almost 1,700km journey, which began from the Bay of Bengal, weakened yesterday much to the relief of thousands of people living on the coastal regions of Bangladesh, India and Myanmar.
Seven days after consolidating into a depression over an area of low pressure in the southern Bay, the cyclonic storm caused heavy rain only to turn into a land depression and fizzle out.
May 10
Originating from an area of low pressure over the southern Bay of Bengal early this month, Mahasen, after remaining nearly stationary, consolidates into a depression.
May 11
9:00am: Gradually gaining forward momentum, the depression attains gale-force winds and is named as Cyclonic Storm Mahasen.
It is centred about 1,700km south-southwest of Chittagong Port, 1,610km south-southwest of Cox’s Bazar Port and 1,705km south-southeast of Mongla Port.
Mahasen in the Bay of Bengal is moving north-westwards, prompting the country’s three maritime ports — Chittagong, Cox’s Bazar and Mongla — to hoist local cautionary signal 3, on a scale of 1-11.
May 12
Mahasen moves slowly towards the Chennai coast of India with possibility of shifting its course towards Bangladesh.
May 13
At 1:00am, its eye is around 1,425km south-southwest of Chittagong Port, 1,345km south-southwest of Cox’s Bazar coast and 1,350km south of Mongla Port.
May 14
At midnight, Mahasen’s eye was about 1,235km south-southwest of Chittagong Port, 1,160km south-southwest of Cox’s Bazar Port and 1,145km south-southwest of Mongla Port.
May 15
Afternoon: Moves slightly north-northeastwards after approaching Bangladesh coastline within around 600km.
6:00pm: Centred about 700km south southwest of Chittagong Port, 640km southwest of Cox’s Bazar Port and 575km south southwest of Mongla Port.
10:00pm: It is centred about 635km south southwest of Chittagong Port, 580km southwest of Cox’s Bazar Port and 515km south-southwest of Mongla Port.
May 16
Zero hours: Mahasen set to cross between Patuakhali (Khepupara) and Teknaf coast near Chittagong by noon. Moving slightly north-northeastwards, it is centred about 555km southwest of Chittagong Port, 500km southwest of Cox’s Bazar Port and 445km south-southwest of Mongla Port.
Maximum wind speed within 54km of the storm centre is about 62kmph, rising to 90kmph in gusts or squalls.
6:00am: Moves slightly north-northeastwards, setting its course towards Chittagong-Cox’s Bazar coast.
9:00am: Hits Kuakata of Patuakhali. Crossing over Barguna, it lashes Charfassion and Char Kukrimukri upazilas of Bhola before crossing over Noakhali.
Noon: It reaches Sitakunda on way to the Noakhali-Chittagong coast.
4:00pm: After crossing the Noakhali-Chittagong coast, Mahasen turns into a land depression and lies over Sitakunda, Feni, Khagrachhari and the adjoining Indian state of Tripura.