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Cyclone to miss Burma, Met Office says

PHOTO: Department of Meteorology and Hydrology (Myanmar), 7 November 2014 (06:00 local time)

A depression over the Bay of Bengal “is likely to intensify further into a cyclonic storm during next 12 hours”, said Burma’s Department of Meteorology and Hydrology (DMH) at 6am local time. However, the storm is not moving towards the Burmese coastline, the report said.

According to the DMH on Friday morning, the low-pressure zone is centred at around 480 miles southwest of the Irrawaddy delta town of Bassein (Pathein), and 370 miles northwest of Port Blair in India.

Regions across Burma will be affected in the coming days by winds and rain as a consequence of the cyclonic storm, it said. Heavy rain is expected in the southern part of Sagaing Division, Mandalay, Magwe, Pegu, Rangoon and Irrawaddy divisions, as well as in Shan, Arakan, Karenni, Karen and Mon states, while squalls are likely to occur along the coast with surface wind speed of 40mph.

Traditionally, the beginning of November marks the end of rainy season, and a time when rice farmers are preparing to harvest paddy. However, the Irrawaddy delta and Rangoon Division have been hit by floods which have inundated and destroyed many fields.