Men take a small boat to travel across flood waters past a marooned farm building to reach their homes in Pandanad in Alappuzha district in Kerala on August 21.(AFP Photo)
Men take a small boat to travel across flood waters past a marooned farm building to reach their homes in Pandanad in Alappuzha district in Kerala on August 21.(AFP Photo)

Soon, another radar to help predict severe weather in Kerala

Along with the existing radars in Kochi and Thiruvananthapuram, the new one will help the Indian Meteorological Department monitor the entire state of Kerala.
New Delhi | By Anonna Dutt
UPDATED ON AUG 21, 2018 10:57 PM IST

To improve extreme weather forecasts, including extremely heavy rains, the Union ministry for earth sciences will install a C-Band Doppler Weather Radar in Mangalore by the end of next year, a senior official familiar with the matter said on Tuesday. This will help in monitoring the northern parts of Kerala.

Along with the existing radars in Kochi and Thiruvananthapuram, the new one will help the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) monitor the entire state of Kerala.

An extremely heavy rainfall event between August 8 and 16 was responsible for one of the biggest floods the state has experienced in a century. The devastating deluge left at least 232 dead and displaced 10 lakh people.

With the addition of the third radar, IMD will be able to issue ‘nowcast’ for Kerala. Nowcast is the forecast for the next couple of hours.

“The new radar will help us in predicting severe weather events over the region better. And, we will also be able to issue nowcasts,” said M Rajeevan, secretary, ministry of earth sciences.

“Centre will strengthen weather prediction infrastructure in Kerala with the setting up of another C-Band Doppler Weather Radar at Mangalore by end 2019. It will cover northern parts of Kerala. Already 2 radars are at Kochi & TVM,” tweeted the Union minister for science, technology and earth sciences Harsh Vardhan on Tuesday.

Taking cognisance of the incidents of tropical cyclones near the Western Ghats over Kerala and Karnataka, the ministry will set up a cyclone monitoring station is Thiruvananthapuram in another month, Rajeevan said

This will be the country’s seventh cyclone monitoring station. The other stations are in Chennai, Vishakhapatnam, Bhubaneswar, Kolkata, Ahmedabad and Mumbai. “Currently, Chennai issues all the cyclone forecasts for entire Southern India. The new centre in Thiruvananthapuram will help in better coordination in Kerala and Karnataka,” said Rajeevan.

The additional centre will, however, not have any impact — positive or negative — on the precision of the cyclone in any way.

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