Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Tropical Storm Keila

Tropical storm Keila is forecast to strike Oman at about 12:00 GMT on 2 November. Data supplied by the US Navy and Air Force Joint Typhoon Warning Center suggest that point of landfall will be near 16.2 N,54.0 E.

Keila formed from an area of disturbed weather just south of the Arabian Peninsula. The storm was packing maximum sustained winds of 64 kph (40 mph) as it skirted the coastline of far southern Oman early Wednesday. At least eleven people died as flash flooding from Keila surged across the desert region. But the storm quickly began to dissipate after moving ashore over Oman's arid interior.  Such tropical cyclones form in that area only during two brief periods each year.

Tropical Storm Keila swirling along the coast of Oman

A study released this week says that manmade pollution over India is causing storms over the Arabian Sea to become intense in recent years.

Satellite Image of Tropical Storm Keila on Nov. 2, 2011.
Excerpt from as of 09:52 a.m. Wednesday, November 2, 2011:

Muscat, Nov 1 (ONA)— The latest weather charts, satellite images and numerical weather prediction charts continue showing the presence of a tropical low pressure system centered in the west of the Arabian Sea about 300 Km far from the coasts of the Governorate of Dhofar.

It is expected that the system will continue to centre near the coasts of Dhofar during the next three days. The surface wind around the centre of the system is estimated by 15 to 25 knots. The advection of convective clouds associated with the low pressure system led to varying heavy rains in a number of governorates of the Sultanate.

The statement No. 3 released today by the Directorate General of Meteorology and Air Navigation (DGMAN) said that predictions continue showing the influence of the low pressure system over the governorates of Dhofar, the Al Wusta, the Southern and Northern A’Sharqiyah with varying heavy rains, which may turn into thunderstorms sometimes associated with gusty winds for the next three days. Rains will also extend gradually to cover the governorates of Muscat, the A’Dakhiliyah, the Southern and Northern Al Batinah, the Al Buraimi and the A’Dhahirah.

DGMAN urges all to exercise caution during rains and overflow of wadis, particularly for citizens and residents in the governorates of Dhofar, the Al Wusta, the Southern and Northern A’Sharqiyah due to the continuous heavy rains.

It also affirms again for fishermen and sea-farers to avoid going to the sea in the Sultanate’s coasts overlooking the Arabian Sea during this period, as well as coasts of the Gulf of Oman before ensuring the weather forecast.

Forecast Track of Tropical Storm Keila
These is one of those rare moments when Oman experience this kind of weather disturbance.

In June 2007, a month after my arrival from Manila; Cyclone Gonu considered as the strongest tropical cyclone on record in the Arabian Sea, devastated Oman with severe rain and gusty winds causing massive flooding and damage to infrastructures. Gonu rapidly intensified to attain peak winds of 240 km/h (150 mph) on June 3.

In June 1, 2010, Cyclone Phet lashed the eastern seaboard of Oman with a peak Category 4 tropical cyclone winds of 230 km/h (145 mph). Phet hit the Arabian Peninsula shortly afterwards with hurricane-force winds and crossed into the Arabian Sea. It was later on downgraded to a tropical depression before it hit Pakistan until totally dissipating on June 7.



Aftermath of Tropical Storm Keila 

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