Natural Disasters

Cyclone Nisarga: Mumbai to bear the brunt

Cyclone Nisarga’s landfall will finish in three hours, storm surge, heavy rain and winds expected in Mumbai 

By Akshit Sangomla
Published: Wednesday 03 June 2020
Nisarga will decrease in intensity to a cyclone from a severe cyclone in the next four hours Photo: Twitter / India Met Dept

Cyclone Nisarga made landfall as a severe cyclone with a wind speed of 100-110 kilometres per hour (kmph) and gusts of around 120 kmph on June 3, 2020 afternoon, near Alibaug, around 100 kilometres south of Mumbai.

The landfall process will take three hours to complete. Mumbai will bear the brunt of the cyclone with winds, heavy rainfall and storm surge.

More than 200 millimetres (mm) absolute rainfall is expected in some areas of the Konkan region, including Mumbai, Palghar, Thane and Raigad districts.

It will also cause heavy to extremely heavy rainfall in north central Madhya Pradesh.

Similar to Amphan, inundation from a storm surge will be an important aspect of cyclone Nisarga.

It is expected to have a surge of 1-2 metres higher than the normal sea tide in Maharashtra’s Mumbai, Raigad and Thane districts and will bring saline water in these areas as well.

Nisarga will decrease in intensity to a cyclone from a severe cyclone in the next four hours and maintain this intensity for the next six hours.

Many inland areas east of Mumbai and Raigad will also be impacted by cyclonic wind speeds.

The cyclone will subsequently de-intensify into a depression on June 4 afternoon. This means many areas in Madhya Pradesh and eastern Maharashtra can get heavy to very heavy rainfall.

This is the first time since 1891 that a cyclone is making landfall so close to Mumbai, according to data from the India Meteorological Department (IMD).

Nisarga is the second cyclone in the North Indian Ocean (NIO) region in 2020 after cyclone Amphan in the Bay of Bengal. It is the first one in the Arabian Sea this year, after the five that emerged there in 2019.

Nisarga is the 13th out of a total 17 cyclones that turned severe and formed in the NIO region in this period.

Five out of 11 cyclones turned severe from 2015-17, an increase of 76 per cent from 45 per cent.

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