Cyclone Bansi is now approaching Rodrigues Island at about 11km/h and according to a recent press statement by the Minister of Environment, Raj Dayal, the cyclone can cause a devastating tsunami there in the coming 24-48 hours. (Click here for latest updates about Bansi + tracking info)
While most of you must be wondering if the Minister is talking nonsense, the occurrence of a Tsunami, or more precisely a meteotsunami is possible due to the strength of the cyclone and the distance it is expected to pass near Rodrigues Island.
Some meteorological conditions, especially deep depressions such as tropical cyclones, can generate a type of storm surge called a meteotsunami which raises water heights above normal levels, often suddenly at the shoreline. In the case of deep tropical cyclones, this is due to very low atmospheric pressure and inward swirling winds causing an uplifted dome of water to form under and travel in tandem with the storm. When these water domes reach shore, they rear up in shallows and surge laterally like earthquake-generated tsunamis, typically arriving shortly after landfall of the storm’s eye. (Source of info)
Winds of up to 100km/h are expected at Rodrigues tonight while waves of 5-7 metres have already been recorded on the Island this afternoon.