Due to the impending threat of the severe cyclonic storm “Amphan”, Kolkata Port Trust (KoPT) has in a notice called on all concerned to take adequate precautions. Landfall is forecast in the nearby coastal areas .
The notice also informed of the following:
- Cargo operations will be suspended from 0800 hours on 20.05.2020 to 0630 hours on 21.05.2020 at all cargo handling locations and facilities of KDS.
- All equipment (MHC, RTG, cranes, forklifts, etc.) of all contractors, stevedore, shore handling agents, CFSs, Empty Plots operators shall be safely secured.
- No personnel will be allowed to remain outdoors.
- Entry exit of any vehicles will not be allowed from the gates except in case of emergency.
- Central Permit Office will not function during above period.
- Railway operations will also remain suspended during the period.
- All C&F agents/transporters must take their cargo carrying vehicles out of the docks by 0800 hours on 20.05.2020.
- Control rooms have been set up at Traffic Office with the following contact numbers: Mobile: +91 62922 18330/Alternate: +91 98362 98653
- Control room has also been set up at Subhas Bhavan with the following contact number: Phone: + 91 33710 03315
Another communication from KoPT added that the following preventive measures are being taken in order to prevent any damage to port property and merchant ships.
- All the 19 vessels at Sandheads anchorage have picked up their anchor and proceeded down to deep sea so as to avoid the path of the storm.
- All cargo handling operations at Diamond Harbour and Sagar anchorage have been stopped and the vessels put out to sea.
- All the barges have been told to move up to the sheltered water.
- No ships have been kept at the oil jetties of Haldia and Baj Baj.
- All movements of inward and outward vessels cancelled at Kolkata.
- Movement of inbound and outbound vessels at HDC cancelled from PM on Tuesday. During AM tide, three ships sailed from Haldia and two ships were taken inside docks.
- Pilot vessel Ma Ganga and 4 pilot launches have been taken inside HDC as a precautionary measure.
- All the vessels in the docks have been instructed to secure with additional mooring ropes and lines. At present there are 15 merchant vessels at KDS, 6 at KPD and 9 at NSD. 11 merchant vessels are at Haldia Docks.
- All the port owned and hired utility crafts have been taken inside docks except for 1 tug and 1 launch at Kolkata which will be at locks for exigency. Similarly, at HDC, tugs will be at locks for exigency.
- Control Rooms have been set up at Subhas Bhavan, Sagar and Jawahar Tower at Haldia for 24 hours monitoring.
- Meanwhile, other ports in the Bay of Bengal are also reportedly bracing for Amphan as it intensifies. It is expected to move across the northwest Bay of Bengal and cross the West Bengal-Bangladesh coasts on May 20 as an extremely severe cyclonic storm with maximum sustained wind speed of 165-175 kmph gusting to 195 kmph.
At the port of Vizag, Storm Flag 2 has been hoisted and all waiting vessels have been advised to proceed to safe anchorage at outer port limits. Working vessels at LPG berth have shifted to anchorage and cargo discharge at VGCB has been suspended due to heavy rolling.
Storm Flag 2 is also hoisted at Gangavaram. Inward movements are suspended and all working vessels shifted to anchorage.
At Dhamra, all inward movements have been cancelled since May 18, and all vessels at berth shifted to sea from 0001 hours on May 19 onwards. All vessels at Dhamra anchorage are to pick up anchor and move to sea well before onset of cyclonic weather.
All inwards movements at Paradip remain suspended. All vessels at anchorage are to pick up anchor and proceed to safe anchorage at outer port limits.