27 upazilas affected by storm surge: Disaster management ministry

People working to strengthen washed away dams with sand-filled geo bags as tide water of Chuna river enters locality in Burigoalini area of Shyamnagar upazila, Satkhira on 26 May 2021Suvra Kanti Das

People of 27 upazilas across nine coastal districts of Bangladesh were hit by a three to six feet storm surge caused by cyclone Yaas Wednesday, reports UNB.

State minister for disaster management and relief Md Enamur Rahman said this at a media briefing in Dhaka.

Yaas moved inland into India’s Odisha from the Bay of Bengal on Wednesday morning, but Bangladesh remained largely unscathed. However, people in districts such as Satkhira, Khulna, Bagerhat, Pirojpur, Barguna, Patuakhali, Bhola, Noakhali and Lakshmipur have been affected by the high tide, Enamur said.

At least two deaths were reported in Bangladesh and thousands of people in 200 villages were marooned as their homes, shops and farms were flooded by tidal surges.

The “very severe cyclonic storm” packed sustained winds of 130-140 kilometres per hour and gusts of up to 155 kph when it made landfall, the India Meteorological Department said.

The affected upazilas include Shyamnagar, Asashuni, Koyra, Dacope, Paikgachha, Sharankhola, Mongla, Morelganj, Mathbaria, Barguna Sadar, Patharghata, Amtali, Patuakhali Sadar, Galachipa, Rangabali, Dashmina, Mirzaganj, Kolapara, Charfassion, Monpura, Tajumuddin, Dawlatkhan, Borhanuddin, Bhola Sadar, Hatia, Ramgati and Kamalnagar, Enamur informed.

The government rushed 16,500 packets of dry food to the affected residents of these areas, he said.

Inundation at Char Manpura, Bhola due to cyclone Yaas on 26 May 2021
Prothom Alo

As the cyclone developed, Bangladesh Scouts, Red Crescent Society, Ansar and VDP along with 76,000 volunteers from Cyclone Preparation Programme moved to provide support to the coastal population, Enamur added. “They had also teamed up with the local administration to evacuate people from the low-lying areas.”

Disaster management and relief secretary Md Mohsin said, “Primarily, some damages have been calculated. The details of losses and damages will be described in a report, which will be presented in another meeting. We will do it as soon as the fieldwork is done.”

Tidal water entered some localities in Patuakhali, Barguna, Satkhira and Pirojpur as embankments were washed away.

As an aftermath of Yaas, 250 houses got damaged and 900 cattle washed away in Bhola. A man died in the district after being hit by a falling tree branch during a storm triggered by Yaas Tuesday. The district has been seeing drizzles and strong wind since Wednesday.

At least 5,000 families in Bagerhat have become stranded in submerged villages as the local rivers swelled up due to Yaas. Around 21 villages of the district got flooded, affecting 2,700 people.

Also, a four-year-old child died this afternoon after drowning near her house in Morelganj upazila of Bagerhat. Morelganj Upazila Nirbahi Officer Md Delwar Hossain said that the roads and drains of the upazila have been inundated due to an unusual increase in the water level of the River Panguchi.

People shift with their belongings as water level rises because of the effect of cyclone Yaas on 26 May 2021
Prothom Alo

Besides, an embankment in Mongla was damaged at three places due to excessive tidal pressure leaving at least 500 families stranded in Kainmari, Sundartala, Kaltala, Jaymoni and South Kaimari villages of the upazila Wednesday afternoon.

Low-lying areas in Koyra, Dacope and Paikgachha upazilas of Khulna were inundated by tidal surge triggered by Yaas. The residents of the upazilas have been experiencing light rains or drizzles since Wednesday noon and the local administration has opened over 1,000 cyclone shelters.

Three persons were injured while some 50 houses were damaged in a storm at Armukhi village in Sadar upazila of Jhenaidah Tuesday night.