• Crisis Severity ?
    1.9
    0 Very low
    Very high 5
  • Impact ?
    2.6
    0 Very low
    Very high 5
  • Humanitarian Conditions ?
    2.0
    0 Very low
    Very high 5
  • Complexity ?
    1.4
    0 Very low
    Very high 5
  • Access Constraints ?
     
    No constraints
    Extreme constraints

Overview

09/06/2020

Cyclone Amphan made landfall on 20 May, bringing torrential rain and winds around 200km/h to West Bengal and Odisha states. The storm was the first “Super Cyclone” to form in the Bay of Bengal since 1999, though it weakened before making landfall and was categorised as a severe cyclone.?

Amphan severely affected seven districts: South 24 Paraganas, North 24 Paraganas, East Medinipur, West Medinipur, Howrah, Hooghly and Kolkata. An estimated 60 million people were in the path of the storm and at least 86 people died.?

The cyclone caused widespread destruction to homes, crops, and water infrastructure. Approximately 80,000 homes have been destroyed or damaged, and more than 660,000 people were evacuated in the days before the storm made landfall.?

Estimates suggest more than 5,000 trees were uprooted in Kolkata and thousands of electricity poles were downed, causing road blockages and leaving 14 million people without power. Disruptions in electricity and communications and damaged and blocked roads have hindered humanitarian response.?

Key Priorities

09/06/2020

Shelter: An estimated 80,000 homes were damaged or destroyed, potentially leaving millions homeless. More than 660,000 people were evacuated in West Bengal and Odisha; it is unclear how many people remain in shelters.?

WASH: North and South 24 Parganas and the area surrounding Kolkata have been severely affected by water shortages. Dozens of water pipelines were damaged, a critical water treatment facility severely disrupted, and damage to embankments and storm surges has led to saltwater contamination of drinking water sources.?

Livelihoods: Thousands of hectares of crops were flooded. Local farmers and authorities have raised concerns that the high level of salt water will render farmland unusable if the water is not drained.?

Information Gaps

09/06/2020

Information about the extent of damage and humanitarian conditions in the areas affected by the cyclone remains limited. Initial reports indicate that WASH, food, and shelter needs are high, though specific needs, priority areas, and the total number of displaced people remains unknown.

Damage and needs assessment are ongoing.

Impact of COVID-19

09/06/2020

Preparation and response to Cyclone Amphan has been hindered by the COVID-19 pandemic. Emergency shelters in India had reportedly converted to COVID-19 isolation centres, decreasing the capacity for evacuations in affected areas. Emergency shelters that were open for evacuees were hosting only 50% of their capacity in an attempt to maintain social distancing measures. This resulted in a lower number of evacuations than initially expected in both West Bengal and Odisha states.?