| Wind, rains batter coastal regions
| Monday, May 25, 2009
|Dhaka, May 25 (bdnews24.com)–The coastal areas had rainfall since early on Monday under the influence of cyclone Aila, with thousands evacuated to safety.
Ferry movement also remained suspended on most of the river routes of the southern region. The sky in the northern region remained cloudy.
The inclement weather also forced suspension of all operations in Chittagong and Mongla sea ports.
The meteorological office said the cyclonic storm Aila might cross Khulna-West Bengal around Monday afternoon. The maritime ports of Chittagong and its surrounding areas were asked to hoist signal number 6 and Khulna and its surrounding areas seven.
bdnews24.com Chittagong correspondent said the city was seeing sporadic rains from Sunday evening. The sky was cloudy
Chittagong Port Authority secretary Syed Mohammad Farhaduddin told bdnews24.com that they had suspended all operations since the morning.
"Authorities have announced a level three alert and opened control room," he said.
"We are sending 23 ships of the port to the outer anchorage. There are 48 ships in the outer anchorage. Lighterage ships were asked to stay in the upstream," the port official said
CPA held a top-level meeting on Sunday night to discuss ways to face the situation.
Chittagong City Corporation and district administration have opened two control rooms and taken up other kinds of arrangements.
The Bagerhat correspondent reported intermittent rains twined with strong wind in the district.
Mongla port harbour master commander Md Enamul Haque said there were five ships in the port. Authorities suspended offloading from 6:45am.
The ships were kept in the safe shelter, he said.
There were incessant rainfalls in Patuakahli from Sunday night. All ferry movement remained suspended on the inland routes.
The rivers in the char lands were flowing in high tide.
Fishermen are coming back from the sea because of high tide, said general secretary of fish traders committee Nimai Chandra from Kuakata.
Authorities were ready with 6,000 volunteers to deal with the disaster. Control rooms were opened in each Upazila.
The people of the coastal southern district, hit by cyclone Sidr in late 2007, are living in constant fear on the news that a depression in the Bay of Bengal has turned into a cyclonic storm.
It has been raining sporadically since Saturday midnight and the sun has remained behind the clouds.
Hundreds of fishing trawlers have returned to Pathorghata, Noli and Taltoli from the Bay until Sunday afternoon, said president of Barguna District Trawler Owners' Association Golam Mostafa Chowdhury.
"We will start calling people to shelter buildings through megaphones as soon as the level of the signal is increased," said the team leader of cyclone preparation activities and member of Borguna Red Crescent Unit Zakir Hossain Miraj.
The weather forced suspension ferry movement between Chandpur and the rest of the country from Monday morning.
Two pontoons of the ferry terminal sank as the water level rose in the river Dakatia.
BIWTA's assistant port director Rezaul Karim at Chandpur river port said the ferry movement would remain suspended until further directive.
Squally wind has been flowing over Cox's Bazar from early Monday. The sea is rough.
District relief and rehabilitation official Abdul Aziz said they had held meeting to discuss ways to tackle the disaster.
The Red Crescent is ready with its voluntary team.
Cox's Bazar fishing belt owners' association president Mujibur Rahman said most trawlers returned to the shore.
A woman, Nazma, 30, was swept aside as low-lying areas of Nijhum Island went six to seven feet under water due to hide tide at in Noakhali.
Noakhali was experiencing sporadic rains under the influence of Aila since Monday morning.
At least 30-35 houses were inundated after water began entering many areas of the island from 10am.
Jahajmara range official Hafizuddin said many deer were likely to be swept by the sea as water level rose than the normal level.
The low-lying areas, including shrimp enclosures, went four to five feet under water in high tide in Bagerhat.
Bagerhat deputy commissioner Moazzem Hossain told bdnews24.com that Jaimonir Ghol, Chila of Mongla, Malliker Ber, Banshtoli and Madardia Bazar of Rampal, Rayenda Bazar and Morelganj of Sharankhola went three to four feet under water.
Authorities opened 10 control rooms and 219 cyclone shelters at all upazilas and district sadar.
The affected people of the inundated areas have been herded into cyclone shelters.
Five villages went under water as dam of Khajura point in Kuakata collapsed leaving thousands of families stranded.
Hundreds of houses and trees were damaged in the rain and squally wind that occurred from Sunday night.
It had been raining in Khulna and Barisal districts. Bogra and Sylhet correspondents said it had been drizzling from Monday morning.
|posted by Moderator Londen time 1:29 PM