New Delhi: Cyclone Biparjoy, which struck Gujarat earlier this month, was the longest-lasting cyclonic storm in the northern Indian Ocean since 1977, according to the India Meteorological Department (IMD). The cyclone originated on June 6 over the southeast Arabian Sea and made landfall on June 15 before weakening into a depression on June 18.
With a total lifespan of 13 days and three hours, Biparjoy exceeded the average duration of severe cyclonic storms in the Arabian Sea, which is six days and three hours. The previous record for the longest-lasting cyclone in the region was set in 1977, lasting 14 days and six hours.
Biparjoy exhibited erratic behaviour, changing its course nine times over a distance of 2,525 km. This made it challenging for meteorologists to accurately predict its path. Although it briefly intensified into an extremely severe cyclonic storm on June 11, it weakened to a very severe cyclonic storm by the time it made landfall.
The cyclone moved at a slow pace throughout its lifespan, with an average translational speed of 7.7 km per hour. This was significantly slower than the average speed of very severe cyclonic storms during the monsoon season in the Arabian Sea.
During its formation, Biparjoy experienced rapid intensification followed by fluctuations in its strength, with convective clouds showing significant diurnal variations.
To ensure the safety of coastal regions, the National Disaster Management Authority issued alerts to over 32.67 crore users through SMS using the Sachet protocol. Fishermen received 5.63 crore SMSes through INCOIS, while 2.7 lakh SMSes were sent to registered users and the general public in coastal states and disaster management agencies.
The IMD monitored Cyclone Biparjoy using satellite observations, including INSAT-3D and 3DR, SCAT SAT, ASCAT, microwave imageries, ships, buoys, and Doppler Weather Radar (DWR) at Bhuj and Jaipur.