Oman, Yemen Brace for Category 1 Tropical Cyclone ‘Luban’

Oman, Yemen Brace for Category 1 Tropical Cyclone ‘Luban’

Wednesday, 10 October, 2018 - 09:45
Hurricane Michael in a satellite image . NOAA/via REUTERS
Dammam - Asharq Al-Awsat
Saudi Arabia's General Authority for Meteorology and Environmental Protection issued an up-to-date forecast saying that the storm, dubbed Luban, is expected to become a category 1 Tropical Cyclone within the next 12 hours.

Weather forecasts issued by the authority showed that the Kingdom's climate will not be affected by this storm directly for the next four days. Increasing humidity rates in the upper layers of the atmosphere, the cyclone may cause rainfall in some parts of Saudi Arabia next week.

But the cyclone is expected to weaken to a tropical storm again this weekend when it makes its closest approach to Oman and Yemen.

Luban is currently over the Arabian Sea about 830 km away from Salalah city, with surface wind speeds of 50 to 55 knots.

The weather agency said that Luban continues to move towards Oman’s west coast. Forecasts also indicate that areas, which would be affected, are the western coasts of Dhofar and Al Wusta governorates as of Wednesday, seeing sporadic rainfall and rising sea levels.

Oman’s official emergency and disaster procedures authorities held a special meeting with coordinators and representatives of first-response teams and support groups to discuss proactive measures to brace for potential damage the cyclone will cause in the Sultanate.

On May 25, Tropical Cyclone Mekunu made landfall along the coast of Oman, southwest of the city of Salalah. Mekunu was the equivalent of a Category 3 hurricane at landfall, making it the strongest in southwestern Oman in modern records.

Over 24 inches of rain fell in four days in Salalah.

In Yemen, Local Administration Minister Abdul-Raqib Fath urged UN Humanitarian Coordinator Lise Grande to direct relief organizations to take necessary measures for providing safe shelter and relief aid in Socotra, Al Mahrah, Hadramout, and Shabwa governorates that are bracing for heavy impact.

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