After IMD, RIMES terms Titli cyclone ‘rarest of rare’

  • After India Meteorological Department (IMD), the UN registered ‘Regional Integrated Multi-Hazard Early Warning System (RIMES) for Africa and Asia, has termed Cyclone ‘Titli’, the severe cyclonic storm that devastated Odisha in October, as ‘rarest cyclone’.
  • According to the RIMES, more than 200 years of cyclone track history in the Odisha coast reveals that the Titli cyclone is the rarest of rare in terms of its characteristics such as recurvature after landfall and retaining its destructive potential after landfall and recurvature away from the coastal areas for more than two days.
  • The report says that, considering the history of cyclone tracks, no synthetic track projection captures the Titli type of cyclones. The forecast information available lacks actionable early warning information such as no indication of occurrence of secondary hazards, including landslides far away from the coasts.
  • Cyclonic Titli left more than 60 people dead, mainly due to land slide in interior Gajapati district. Odisha, which takes immense pride in disaster preparedness, was confounded in the wake of the damage to both life and property caused by Titli in interior districts.
  • India Meteorological Department had also called the formation of Titli as a ‘rarest of rare’ occurrence. The severe cyclone had changed its path after landfall.
  • The RIMEs said that the Odisha State Disaster Management Authority faced challenges in anticipating and managing Titli’s impact due to lack of impact-based actionable early warning information and prior experience not only in India but also elsewhere. 

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