Cyclone Mora makes landfall in Bangladesh coast

Bangladesh has evacuated at least 350,000 people with Cyclone Mora lashing coastal areas and causing havoc in refugee camps set up for Rohingya Muslims who have fled violence in neighbouring Myanmar.

Low-lying areas of Cox's Bazar, Chittagong and many other coastal districts were "likely to be inundated" by a storm surge of 1.2m-1.5m (4-5ft) above normal levels, the department had warned.

Cyclone Roanu hit the southern coast of Bangladesh a year ago, leaving 20 people dead and forcing half a million to flee their homes.

The Met office said that the cyclone had already started to lose strength, but strong winds and heavy rain in Cox's Bazar and Chittagong were likely continue throughout the day.

Many Bangladesh coasts have been battered by ferocious winds with speed up to 135 kph, which uprooted trees and homes, ripped roofs off buildings and caused widespread power and water outages. And another hundred and fifty thousand were evacuated from the Chittagong district.

Though reports of any casualties have not been reported so far, several properties including huts and kutcha houses were damaged.

Their lives, and the crops on which so many of them depend, he says, are constantly at risk when cyclones hit.

One UN official working with Rohingya refugees reported that numerous camp's inhabitants had remained in the camps regardless of warnings.

'The winds are strong and people there live in flimsy structures, so we're anxious'. Cyclone Sidr in 2007 killed nearly 4,000 people.Flash floods and torrential rain led to landslides in hilly areas, which caused most of the casualties.

In the past many fishermen reported missing during cyclones return to their villages after the storm has subsided.

But Bangladeshi weather officials said the cyclone was not as bad as they had feared.

The people trapped, had been blown away from shore and coastal dwelling units due to Cyclone Mora. After the landfall it continued moving north over Chittagong division and it reached north-eastern India weakening gradually.

  • Leroy Wright