Emergency Declared as Karachi Readies to Face Cyclone Nilofar

Under the influence of severe tropical cyclone Nilofer in Arabian Sea, widespread rain/thundershowers with isolated heavy/very heavy falls accompanied by strong gusty winds are expected in lower Sindh including Karachi and coastal areas of Balochistan during Wednesday (night) to Friday.

Nilofar intensifies
Emergency declared as Karachi readies to face cyclone Nilofar

According to Met office, the sea conditions along Pakistan’s coast would be rough to very rough from Wednesday to Friday. The fishermen of Sindh and Balochistan have been advised not to venture in open sea from Wednesday to Friday. The fishermen who are already in the open sea have been advised to return to coastal areas before Wednesday. Cyclone Nilofer in Arabian Sea will continue to move in northwest direction on Tuesday and is expected to re-curve northeastwards (towards adjoining coastal areas of Lower Sindh and Indian Gujrat) on Wednesday. The cyclone has intensified into a very severe one and is now located at latitude 15.8N and longitude 61.8E, about 1,120 km in southwest of Karachi and 1,030 km south of Gwadar.

At present the estimated central pressure of the cyclone is 990 hpa and the average sustained wind speed is around 90-100 knots gusting up to 110 knots. The coastal belt of Sindh has been closed till November 2 as Section 144 has been imposed as a precautionary measure for Cyclone Nilofar. The law has been imposed on the coastal belt of Karachi, Thatta, Sajawal and Badin. Karachi Commissioner Shoaib Ahmed Siddiqui has asked the Pakistan Navy, Maritime Security Agency and Coast Guard to arrange the immediate return of fishermen from sea. The commissioner has also directed departments concerned to ensure strict implementation of Section 144, banning bathing and swimming in the sea as well as making beach safety arrangements more effective.

Thatta Deputy Commissioner Agha Shahnawaz Babar has enforced emergency in the coastal areas. The district administration has directed the officials of revenue and other departments concerned to remain alert on their duties round the clock. The fishing boats have been warned to return from the deep sea and anchor at safer places on the shore. As per reports the local coastal population has started shifting from the shore to safer places to avoid any eventuality. -dailytimes