• Tuesday, Nov 19, 2019
  • Last Update : 01:19 am

Highest alert no 4 at Chittagong port, all port operations suspended

  • Published at 03:48 pm November 9th, 2019
Chittagong port
File photo of containers piled up in Chittagong port Dhaka Tribune

The Met office issued the great danger signal number nine for Chittagong port

Chittagong Port Authority (CPA) has issued its own alert number 4, which is the highest signal as per its Cyclone Disaster Preparedness and Post-Cyclone Rehabilitation Plan of 1992.

All port operations were suspended as the authorities issued alert 4 on Saturday morning.

Moreover, the Met office issued the great danger signal number nine for the maritime port of Chittagong this morning.

All types of loading and offloading activities from the vessels have remained suspended from Friday night, Omar Faruk, secretary of Chittagong Port Authority (CPA), told Dhaka Tribune.

“All vessels were sent to outer anchorage to avert possible damage from the cyclonic storm. All equipment for handling containers and goods were moved to safer places,” he said.   

All vessels anchored at the jetties of the port were sent to outer anchorage for safe harbour. Lighter vessels were sent upstream of Karnaphuli River for safe anchoring as the port hoisted its highest danger signal.

Chittagong port is the primary port of Bangladesh that handles nearly 80% of the country’s total export-import activities.

As per the Cyclone Disaster Preparedness and Post-Cyclone Rehabilitation Plan of 1992, Chittagong Port Authority hoists four types of alert.

If the Met office hoists cautionary signal number 3, Chittagong port hoists its own alert number 1. For cautionary signal number 4, the authorities hoist alert number 2 is at the port. For cautionary signal numbers 5, 6 and 7, the alert number 3 is hoisted. For danger signal numbers 8, 9 and 10, the highest alert number 4 is hoisted at the maritime port.

District Relief and Rehabilitation Officer Abul Kalam Azad said a total of 479 shelters were kept ready to combat cyclonic storm Bulbul.

Md Rafique, public relations officer of Chittagong City Corporation, told the Dhaka Tribune that, through loudhailers, the corporation staff members have been asking the residents of the coastal areas to move to shelters. He added that medical teams were kept ready as a precaution.

Chittagong Civil Surgeon office of Chittagong has formed a total of 284 medical teams to battle the cyclone.

The medical teams were asked to remain on duty until further notice.

Each upazila consists of five medical teams, while each union consists of one medical team. Each medical team is comprised of 3-5 healthcare activists. The medical teams will provide emergency medical services whenever required. An additional workforce has been kept on standby at the Civil Surgeon office to face any emergency.

As additional precautionary measures, adequate stocks of emergency medicine, water purifying tablets, and oral saline has been kept ready.

In a special weather bulletin on Saturday morning, the Met office issued great danger signal number 10 for maritime ports of Mongla and Payra, and great danger signal number nine for Chittagong port.

Bulbul, situated over northwest Bay of Bengal and adjoining areas, moved further northwards and now lies over the same area. 

At 6am, the very severe cyclonic storm was centred about 525km southwest of Chittagong port, 510km southwest of Cox's Bazar port, 350km southwest of Mongla port, and 375km southwest of Payra port.

It is likely to move in a north/northeasterly direction and may cross West Bengal-Khulna coast (near Sundarbans) by Saturday evening, the bulletin said.