Bangladesh evacuates 400,000 as cyclone hits

Article Date: 
25 May 2009

Bangladesh on Monday evacuated hundreds of thousands of people to emergency shelters on the southwestern coast as a cyclone hit the country, as well as neighbouring India, officials said.

Government weather forecaster Sanaul Haq said Cyclone Aila made landfall between Bangladesh's Khulna district and Sagar Island in India's West Bengal state, unleashing a tidal surge as high as two metres (seven feet).

"It has already started hitting Bangladesh's coast, with a maximum wind speed of 90 kilometres (56 miles) per hour. We have reports that a tidal surge has inundated many coastal villages," the Bangladeshi official said.

In Khulna, which borders India, some 100,000 people had been moved to shelters as strong winds unleashed two-metre water surges, according to the district chief Ziaul Alam.

Article Author: 
Shafiq Alam
Article Source: 
AFP / Google News