Natural Disasters

Localised phenomenon, trough behind Nepal storm?

Twenty-five people have died and 400 injured in the storm that struck southern Nepal on March 31

By DTE Staff
Published: Monday 01 April 2019
Representational Image. Photo: Getty Images
Representational Image. Photo: Getty Images Representational Image. Photo: Getty Images

A localised phenomenon or a low-pressure system in the atmosphere are among the reasons that could have caused the rainstorm that struck southern Nepal on March 31, 2019.

“This is the pre-monsoon season. It could have been a localised phenomenon,” Sujan Subedi, senior divisional meteorological officer at the Meteorological Forecasting Division in Kathmandu told Down To Earth (DTE).

He added that it could also be a low-pressure trough. “Such a trough has been present in the atmosphere for the past few days. It might have contributed to the tragedy,” said Subedi.

The rainstorm struck villages in Bara and Parsa districts. Bara, which is located nearly 128 km south of Kathmandu, borders Bihar.

According to the Nepalese Home Ministry, while 24 people were killed in Bara district, one person died in Parsa district.

According to media reports, most of the deaths and injuries were caused by falling objects and collapsing huts and trees.

The number of causalities is likely to rise as debris is being cleared.

The injured are being brought to hospital by cars and ambulances, but roads in many villages had been blocked by fallen trees and electricity poles.

Most of the injured are from Pheta and Bhulahi Bharwaliya areas in Bara.

At an emergency meeting held in Bara on the morning of April 1, it was decided to provide 300,000 Nepalese rupees each to the victims' families along with a relief package including tents, food items and medical supplies.

Two battalions of the Nepalese Armed Forces have been mobilised at Kathmandu. Night vision helicopters are on stand-by, according to latest media reports.

Nepal Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli has expressed sadness over the loss of lives while extending heartfelt condolences to the bereaved families. 

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