Maritime ports have been cautioned to hoist local warning signal no 4
The Bangladesh authorities are bracing to face and tackle the damage Fani is likely to cause as the cyclonic storm is likely to ford through districts of Bangladesh after battering India.
The storm may hit Bangladesh on Saturday morning after crossing Odisha in India, State Minister for Disaster Management and Relief Enamur Rahman told journalists after an inter-ministerial meeting at the Secretariat in Dhaka on Wednesday.
“We have made all-out preparations to tackle cyclone ‘Fani’ as it is likely to hit Bangladesh on May 4 [Saturday] in a weakened form following striking the Indian coast,” he told journalists at a press briefing after attending a meeting at the ministry’s conference room in the city, reports BSS.
He said necessary control rooms have been opened in 19 coastal districts of the country, adding that the concerned people have been asked to remain watchful to counter the storm.
The concerned district administrations have been informed to stay alert where the storm may hit, he said, adding: “Already 56,000 volunteers are ready in this regard.”
He also called upon the Red Crescent Society, Fire Service, and nearby hospitals to remain prepared for it.
The State Minister asked the concerned authority to utilize schools, colleges and madrasa buildings as cyclone shelter if needed.
Cyclone “Fani” formed in the Bay of Bengal is now 1,000km away from Bangladesh in the deep sea.
If it continues, the storm would hit parts of Odisha and West Bengal in India on Friday.
The storm would later ford through districts of Bangladesh and could affect Khulna, Satkhira, Bagerhat, Pirojpur, Patuakhali, Barguna, Chittagong, and Cox's Bazar areas on Saturday.
The Indian Met department also issued a "yellow warning" for the Odisha coast predicting heavy to very heavy rain in several areas.
Also Read- Cyclone Fani to intensify further
The maritime ports of Chittagong, Cox's Bazar, Mongla, and Payra have been advised to keep hoisted distant warning signal no 2 as Fani—over the West Central Bay and adjoining Southwest Bay—moved northwestwards and intensified further over the same area.
The May Day public holiday was suspended for government officials in some coastal districts as a preparatory measure.
At the same time, all the officers and employees of the Ministry of Disaster Management and Relief, Ministry of Home Affairs, are present at their respective workplaces.
It was centring at 6am Wednesday about 1275kms southwest of Chittagong Port, 1,225kms southwest of Cox's Bazar port, 1150km southwest of Mongla port and 1150km southwest of Payra Port, said a Met office special bulletin.
It is likely to intensify further and move in a north/northwesterly direction.
Maximum sustained wind speed within 74kms of the storm centre is about 160 kph rising to 180 kph in gusts/squalls. Sea will remain very high near the cyclone centre.
All fishing boats and trawlers over the North Bay and deep sea have been advised to remain close to the coast and proceed with caution till further notice. They have also been advised not to venture into the deep sea.
Lakshmipur prepared to combat Fani
Lakshmipur district administration held a meeting on Wednesday to plan and prepare for cyclone Fani.
Led by Anjan Chandra, deputy commissioner (DC) of the district, the meeting was attended by upazila nirbahi officers (UNOs), members of the law enforcement, Fire Service, and Coast Guard members.
In order to tackle any disaster, 66 medical teams have been kept standby.
137 storm shelters ready in Satkhira
Satkhira's district disaster management committee has prepared 137 storm shelters in the district to tackle any disaster.
Speaking to Dhaka Tribune, Shyamnagar UNO Shujon Sarker said that 12 medical teams are on standby in 12 unions of the upazila.
Satkhira DC SM Mostafa Kamal informed that until the threat of the cyclone passes, leave of all government officials in the district has been cancelled.
Our correspondents Md Asaduzzaman Sarder from Satkhira, SM Samsur Rahman from Bagerhat, Abdul Aziz from Cox’s Bazaar, and Saiful Islam Swapan from Lakshmipur contributed to this report