Kolkata thunderstorm: A massive thunderstorm hit West Bengal’s capital city of Kolkata on Tuesday night bringing back the memories of 2009’s Cyclone Aila killing at least 15 people and injuring 50 others. The wind speeds during the thunderstorm reportedly touched 100 kmph in some parts as the nor’wester hit Kolkata and other adjacent districts. Speaking to FinancialExpress.com, Vice President (Meteorology and Climate Change) at Skymet Weather, Mahesh Palawat said that the reason for the sudden activity is the cyclonic circulation persisting over Sub-Himalayan West Bengal and a trough seen passing through the weather system from Northwest Uttar Pradesh to Manipur in northeast India.
Here are the top developments so far:
* As per the police, out of the 15 dead, seven were from the city of Kolkata whereas six were from Howrah district while one each hailed from Bankura and Hooghly districts.
* As the squally winds touched the speed of 98 kmph in some parts, the official observatory at the Airport recorded 28 knots which is in the range of 50-60 kpmh. The Alipore observatory recorded a rainfall of 31 mm whereas the Dumdum observatory recorded 20 mm.
* Chief Minister of the state, Mamata Banerjee, has instructed the chief secretary to look into the situation and prepare a report on the damage and deaths caused by the storm. The disaster management department has been asked to send teams to affected districts, state secretariat officials said.
* Rainfall is expected to continue in some parts of Northeast India for the next 24 to 48 hours. That means the rainfall with squally winds could continue in the central and sub-Himalayan West Bengal. However, the devastating winds with such high speed are highly unlikely.
* There was an interesting pattern seen in the squally winds and rainfall that occurred in Kolkata and the neighbouring regions on Tuesday. Around 3-4 pm in the afternoon of Tuesday, the rainfall with squally winds started but came to a halt around 7 pm. However, there was a regeneration of the weather system over the area which resulted in extremely strong winds.
* What can be called as a sigh of relief for the people of Kolkata, the weather may seem to be a little dainty for the next 24-48 hours, however, the chances of rainfall with squally winds over the city is very unlikely. Light rain can be witnessed over the region for next one or two days.