Cyclonic Storm Amphan


Amidst the coronavirus pandemic, Amphan, a category 5, deadly cyclone hit Bangladesh, the Eastern coast of India and other countries belonging to the Bay of Bengal on the 16th of May, reaching its peak intensity on the 18th of May and collapsing on the 21st May 2020. Over several days, Amphan has caused over 86 deaths and damages worth of US $13 billion.

It is known to be the most powerful cyclone to hit east Asia since the Odisha cyclone in 1999 with a peak wind speed of 240 km per hour that lasted for 3 minutes. Overall, causing the stumble of buildings and landslips. Fortunately, Amphan was forecasted therefore coastal areas were cleared ahead of time by government authorities. Also, led to a mass evacuation of communitiesto safety.

Sri Lanka was the first country to detect the cyclone. On 13th of May 2020, the east coast of Sri Lanka detected unusually warm sea water. Afterwards, cyclone Amphan intensified and travelled north towards Bangladesh and surrounding countries. However, due to Amphan cyclone, Sri Lanka faced heavy rainfall over the next few days that triggered landslides and minor floods all over the country. Two deaths were reported due to a landslide in Rathnapura and another two deaths in the region of Kegalle due to heavy rainfall. Overall, resulted in approximately 500 homes being destroyed.

As the storm of Amphan has concluded, communities struggle to regain their lives back, Azgar Ali from Bangladesh from Satkira district where the storm hit the hardest described the event as “ never seen such a cyclone in my life, for a minute it seemed like the end of the world!”