Cyclone Bulbul (Matmo) Makes Landfall in Eastern India; Flooding Rain, Storm Surge, Winds to Extend into Bangladesh

Jonathan Erdman
Published: November 9, 2019

Tropical Cyclone Bulbul made landfall along the Bay of Bengal coast in eastern India late Saturday night into early Sunday local time. It will spread flooding rain, storm surge and strong winds into Bangladesh through Sunday.

(MORE: In-Depth Details, Impacts on Bulbul

Bulbul made landfall near Sundarban Dhanchi Forest in West Bengal State, according to the India Meteorological Department (IMD). It was the equivalent of a Category 1 tropical cyclone, with 90-mph estimated sustained winds, according to an advisory issued by the U.S. Joint Typhoon Warning Center about 2 a.m. local time Sunday.

The tropical cyclone, also known as Matmo since it originated from the remnant of a Western Pacific tropical storm in the South China Sea in late October, is lashing West Bengal State and southwestern Bangladesh with heavy rain, according to Doppler radar from the IMD.


Forecast Path

Potential Impacts

Heavy rain will fall generally to the north and northeast of the center of Bulbul through Sunday.

Rainfall totals of 3 to 10 inches, with locally higher amounts, are expected over West Bengal State into much of southwestern and central Bangladesh, potentially as far north as the megacities of Kolkata and Dhaka. This could lead to flash flooding.

Additional rainfall forecast for Tropical Cyclone Bulbul. Locally higher amounts are possible where bands of heavy rain stall for a period of a few hours.

According to the IMD, major damage to thatched homes, power lines, trees and coastal crops is expected from Bulbul's winds.

A storm surge of up to 2 meters (about 6.5 feet) above normal tide levels is expected along and near the coast of West Bengal State as Bulbul's center moves ashore, the IMD said. The Bangladesh Meteorological Department forecasts a peak storm surge of 5 to 7 feet above normal tide along the country's southwestern coast.

While Bulbul's surge is not expected to be nearly as massive, the extremely surge-prone Bay of Bengal is infamous for deadly tropical cyclones.

The November 1970 Great Bhola Cyclone claimed 300,000 lives in what is now Bangladesh.

The Weather Company’s primary journalistic mission is to report on breaking weather news, the environment and the importance of science to our lives. This story does not necessarily represent the position of our parent company, IBM.


The Weather Company’s primary journalistic mission is to report on breaking weather news, the environment and the importance of science to our lives. This story does not necessarily represent the position of our parent company, IBM.