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Protection from Cyclones

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Protection from Cyclones - Lesson Summary

Destruction Caused by Cyclones

Cyclones cause a lot of damage to land, people and property, and create a lot of havoc in the lives of the people. When a cyclone hits an agricultural field, it makes the land infertile and useless for agriculture. A cyclone spares nothing. It worsens the flood situation. There are indirect impacts of a cyclone as well, such as flooding in coastal areas. Flooding not only damages land, but also pollutes drinking water sources. This can cause epidemics. High-speed winds during a cyclone can cause major damage to houses, human beings, animals, trees, power supply, and even communication systems such as telephones. 

High waves several kilometres away from the shore indicate an upcoming storm. As a cyclone strikes the coast, the intense winds raise the water into a gigantic wave that is pushed towards the shore. A high wall of water moving towards the shore from the ocean is called a storm surge. The combination of a storm surge and a tide is known as a storm tide. The most dangerous storms are the ones where the storm surge arrives on top of a high tide, and then the storm reaches an area that might otherwise have been safe.

Names of Tropical Cyclones

Tropical cyclones are given names. The names are selected from a list decided by the national meteorological organisation of a country, or by a committee of the World Meteorological Organisation. The names of tropical cyclones that cause major death or destruction are not used again, as a tribute to the people who lose their lives in the disaster.

Safety Measures Taken by the Government

To keep people safe and secure during a cyclone, the government takes certain measures, such as:
     •  Constructing cyclone centres in the cyclone prone areas
     •  Making arrangements to relocate people during cyclones
     •  Providing information about a cyclone, and warning people, fishermen, ships, ports, airlines and various government      agencies
     •  Delivering accurate and effective cyclone forecasts and warnings

Cyclone Forecasting and Warning

The development and movement of cyclones is studied with the help of INSAT satellite and a series of Cyclone Detection Radars installed along the coastal belt of India. With the help of modern technology, a cyclone alert or cyclone watch is issued 48 hours in advance of any expected storm and a cyclone warning is issued 24 hours in advance. The message is broadcast every hour with the help of TV and Radio.

Safety Measures to Follow before and during a Cyclone

     •  Do not move out unless and until required.
     •  Keep a note of all the warnings given by the Meteorological Department.
     •  Keep emergency phone numbers of police, ambulance and fire brigade handy.
     •  Move people and valuable items to a safe place.
     •  Store hygienic drinking water.
     •  Help neighbours and friends.
     •  Avoid contact with wet electric lines and switches.
     •  Store enough food items in waterproof bags.
     •  Avoid going in flood water and be careful of snake bites.


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