Bhubaneswar, Oct 11:
With ‘Phailin’ very severe cyclonic storm looming over the state, it may be recalled that so high was the wind speed of the super cyclone that ravaged Odisha in 1999 that the anemometers at the IMD office and at Paradip had failed to record it.
“The speed of the wind was so high that the anemometer installed at Bhubaneswar and Paradip could not record it,” a report prepared by United Nations Development Programme, Odisha Disaster Management Authority and Utkal University said.
On October 29, 1999, the super cyclone with a wind speed of 300 mph had struck the state making it probably the greatest cyclonic disaster ever recorded in the last century, the report said.
The cyclone heading toward Gopalpur in Odisha’s Ganjam district beside Andhra Pradesh now has a relatively lesser wind speed of 205 to 215 kmph.
The 1999 super cyclone centred over coastal areas of the state for three days was accompanied by torrential rain as a tidal surge of about 7 to 10 meter swept 40 to 50 km inland, it said.
The magnitude of the devastation was such that it came to be known as a ‘super cyclone’.
While the cyclonic storm heading for Odisha now originated from near the Andaman Islands in the sea, the 1999 super cyclone had also originated from about 550 km east of the same area as a depression.(PTI)