Cyclone Giri makes landfall in Myanmar, kills one

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Satellite image of Cyclone Giri approaching Myanmar
Image: NASA.

At least one person is dead and many more are missing as Cyclone Giri made landfall in Myanmar at around 8:00 pm local time (0130 UTC), according to officials. Giri strengthened just before making landfall in the capital of the Rakhine State, Sittwe, according to local media. An offical reported that a woman was killed in Minpyar when a tree collapsed, but he had not heard of anymore deaths yet. It was also reported that 100 fishermen are missing after the storm caught them in the northeastern Bay of Bengal.

The hardest hit area was the coastal town of Kyaukphyu, which suffered power loss and destruction of its seawall. A Red Cross worker reported that about 70% of the city had been destroyed and there were 60,000 people who were in need of help, however no deaths were reported. "Fishermen and people there have had time to move to safer places as disaster measures were already in place," he said. "Our office in Kyaukphyu was destroyed by a falling tree... we have had problems getting transport and the latest data but are trying to reach the affected areas as soon as possible."

Giri also produced wave heights of 7 to 8 meters (23-26 feet) which forced residents of St Martin's island and Teknaf to move to shelters. According to a resident of Sittwe, "the authorities warned us with loudspeakers yesterday to prepare for the cyclone, so people had time to move safer places." The strongest winds moved through the area on Saturday afternoon and then moved northeastward through the center of the country. Department of Meteorology and Hydrology stated that Giri is expected to weaken to a moderate tropical storm as it moves further inland.

Full Wikinews coverage of the 2010 hurricane season