Residents along India’s eastern coast are being warned about potential impacts from Cyclonic Storm Fani this week, while no relief will come from the dangerous heat in the nation’s northern and western regions.
The deep depression in the southern Bay of Bengal strengthened into Cyclonic Storm Fani on Saturday, local time. The strength of a cyclonic storm equates to a tropical storm in the Atlantic or northern Pacific basins.
Further strengthening can cause the system to intensify into the equivalent of a hurricane and be called a severe cyclonic storm or a very severe cyclonic storm by the start of May.
Seas will build and become dangerous for boaters and swimmers around the southern Bay of Bengal as the storm intensifies.
Residents along the eastern coast of India are being alerted to potential other hazards.
“The main threats from this storm will be heavy rain, flooding and perhaps damaging wind gusts,” AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Jason Nicholls said, “but the exact amount of rain and strength of the winds will be dependent on how close it tracks to the coast.”
Latest indications spare Sri Lanka and Tamil Nadu in India from the brunt of the cyclone’s rain and wind.
Even if the storm bypasses Sri Lanka and Tamil Nadu, areas to the north may not be as fortunate.
One scenario for the storm is to threaten the coast from northern Andhra Pradesh to Odisha and West Bengal with heavy rain and wind later this week into the weekend. Impacts would be limited to dangerously rough seas if the storm remains far enough offshore.
Beyond West Bengal, flooding rain and strong winds may accompany the storm as it slams into Bangladesh with an eventual track into northeastern India later in the weekend or early in the following week.
Cyclonic Storm Fani strengthening across the Bay of Bengal on Sunday, April 28, 2019. (NASA MODIS)
Regardless of the storm’s exact track, it will not press far enough inland to bring any heat relief to northern and western India.
Thursday marked the hottest day so far this year in the National Capital Region (NCR), when temperatures soared to 43.2 C (109.8 F) at the Indira Gandhi International Airport.
Temperatures in the city waned slightly over the weekend, though dangerous heat will continue through the coming week.
“These cities can experience their hottest day of the year multiple times during this event,” said AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Eric Leister.
“India endures lengthy heat waves each year prior to the arrival of monsoonal rainfall; however, this heat has arrived earlier than normal in recent years, putting more people at risk for heat-related illnesses,” he added.
Residents will have to continue to take the necessary precautions to avoid heat-related illnesses.
Drinking plenty of water, spending time in the shade and wearing light clothing will be necessary. When possible, strenuous outdoor activity should be avoided during the hottest part of the day.
Stagnant conditions contributing to the high heat are also resulting in dangerously poor air quality conditions. Face masks should be worn by anyone spending time outdoors. Children, the elderly and those with respiratory or cardiovascular health conditions should avoid spending time outside as much as possible.
(This story originally appeared on accuweather.com)