Orange alert issued as Goa braces for cyclone-fuelled rain, wind

The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has issued an orange alert for Goa, predicting heavy to very heavy rainfall until Thursday with the low pressure in the Arabian Sea off India’s west coast set to intensify into a cyclonic circulation.

While not unusual at this time of the year, the spell of rains is set to coincide with the reopening of the state as people scramble to complete monsoon preparations on hold because of the Covid-19 lockdown.

“Light to moderate rainfall at most places with isolated heavy to very heavy falls [is] very likely over Konkan and Goa on 2nd June and over south Konkan and Goa on 3rd June,” IMD said in its forecast late on Sunday evening.

“Light to moderate rainfall at most places with isolated heavy to very heavy falls [is] very likely over Konkan and Goa on 2nd June and over south Konkan & Goa on 03rdJune,” it added.

The warnings have rendered the ‘reduced’ fishing ban period infructuous since fishermen haven’t been allowed to venture into the sea owing to the rough to very rough over sea condition along and off Karnataka-south Maharashtra coasts from June 2.

Earlier, heeding a notification from the central government, the state had granted fishermen an additional 15 days after it reduced the 61-day fishing ban to 47-day ban that would come into effect from June 15 instead of June 1 as has been the practice.

The coastal belt will also witness fast currents and high waves in the range of 2.8 to 4 metres high.

Drishti Marine, the state-appointed professional lifeguard agency, has issued an advisory instructing visitors to the beach not to venture into the sea during the next 48 hours with heavy pre-monsoon showers expected over the next two days.

“Citizens are advised to be cautious as rough weather and sea conditions will prevail during these days. Drishti especially cautioned adults to keep a very close eye on children while on the beach and to not allow children to venture into the waters unattended, no matter how shallow it may be,” Drishti Marine said in a statement.

Despite the advisories, people have been flocking to beaches of the state to make the most of the last few days of sunshine before the onset of the monsoon.

Heavy rain and wind are not usually deadly in Goa and incidents of flooding are rare.

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