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India, Sri Lanka – Tropical Cyclone Gaja Update (GGDACS, JTWC, IMD) (ECHO Daily Flash of 15 November 2018)

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  • Tropical cyclone GAJA continued south-west over the Bay of Bengal, slightly strengthening. On 15 November at 0:00 UTC, its centre was located approx. 370 km east-north-east of Nagapattinam town (Tamil Nadu State, south-east India) and 375 km north-east of Point Pedro town (northeastern Sri Lanka) with maximum sustained winds of 83 km/h.

  • GAJA could make landfall close to Nagapattinam town on 15 November late in the afternoon, as a tropical storm, with maximum sustained winds up to 95-100 km/h.

  • Heavy rainfall and strong winds and storm surge could affect Tamil Nadu and Kerala, southern Andhra Pradesh over 15-16 November. A Red Warning for heavy rainfall remains in effect for Tamil Nadu and an Orange Warning for Tamil Nadu and Kerala.

  • Major damage is expected to thatched huts/houses and lesser damage to power and communication systems. Schools and colleges in Tamil Nadu have been closed as a precautionary measure.

  • 30,000 rescue personnel and 11 companies of NDRF teams have been placed on standby in India. However, the system is not expected to result in significant humanitarian needs at this stage.