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India, Bangladesh - Tropical Cyclone AMPHAN update (DG ECHO, UNICEF, Indian Meteorological Service, media) (ECHO Daily Flash of 21 May 2020)

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  • TC AMPHAN made landfall between Digha (West Bengal) and Hatiya Islands (Bangladesh) on Wednesday 20 May as category 3 storm (Saffir-Simpson scale) bringing strong winds up to 185 km/h and heavy rain, damaging houses, crops and cutting power supplies to cities and towns already struggling to contain the COVID-19 outbreak.

  • At least 14 people have been reported killed in India and 7 in Bangladesh. More than three million people have been evacuated to emergency shelters.

  • After landfall TC AMPHAN was downgraded to a tropical depression, but is expected to bring heavy to moderate rain over the next 24 hours in the northeast Indian states, West Bengal and Sikkim, as well as in most of Bangladesh, including in the Rohingya refugees camps.

  • According to UNICEF's reporting, the storm has put many people at risk, not only as a direct effect of floods and wind damage, but also given the potential spread of COVID-19 in crowded evacuation shelters.

  • TC AMPHAN is one of the most powerful storms in the region in the past 20 years. In 1999, TC ODISHA killed in India more than 9,800 people and damaged more than 1,8 million houses while last year TC FANI killed 89 people and did USD 8.1 billion in damage in India and Bangladesh.

  • ERCC triggered EMS COPERNICUS to produce satellite imagery over the area of Bashan Char island/Bangladesh.