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Sanjeev Kumar Patro

Bhubaneswar: Lightning and norwesters have become a regular phenomenon in Odisha this April. As the month of April is giving way to May, the trend is lightning and thunderstorm phenomenons are being observed in more and more places every day in the State.

On April 27, warnings were issued for 10 places. The number went up to 20 on April 28 and the count stood at 25 on April 29. Moreover, Odisha continues to witness more lightning nationally.

Sample this. When lightning and thunderstorm warning have been issued today to over 100 places in the country, Odisha alone accounted for a massive 25 places. Neighbouring West Bengal is predicted to witness lightning in only around a dozen of places, the IMD data shows.

However, the major prediction is the atmosphere in State will remain conducive to thunderstorm and lightning activities for Thursday (April 30) and Friday (May1).

As per the Global Ensemble Forecast System (GEFS) based prediction by IITM (Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology), the atmospheric conditions in the State will favour lightning and thunderstorm activities on Thursday and Friday.

The top lightning and thunderstorm prediction centre in the country in its forecast today said since the Supercell Composite Parameter (SCP) is estimated to remain more than 3 on April 29 and May 1 in Odisha, probability of thunderstorm and lightning is very high in the State. However, the fact of respite is it estimates the threat level as low, which means the damage level (to infrastructure) is low.

What is Supercell Composite Parameter (SCP):  As per weather science, a persistent rotating updraft of air is called supercell thunderstorm type. The SCP measures this vorticity (rotation). And if it is greater than 1, then the atmosphere is considered conducive for thunderstorm.

The IITM prediction also shows that coastal areas in the State may witness wind gust of more than 25 knots or 46 km/hour. The probability is very high in south coastal region, says the GEFS model.

Above all, the time period of lightning and thunderstorm for tomorrow is predicted for between 12 PM and 9 PM. Evening 6 PM is described as the lightning hour for the State tomorrow.

Meanwhile, the norwester update for today is warning has been hoisted for as many as 25 places in the State, The warning is valid till 8 PM today.

The places are: Nabarangpur, Rayagada, Paralakhemundi, Bhawanipatna, Nuapada, Balangir, Phulbani, Sonepur, Bargarh, Sundergarh, Deogarh, Keonjhargarh, Baripada, Jajpur, Balasore, Chandbali, Khurda, Nayagarh, Talcher, Dhenkanal, Chilka, Gopalpur, Rourkela and Jharsuguda.

The capital city Bhubaneswar today recorded lightning at around 6 PM. And the intensity of the lightning current is measured at 8kA or 8000 volts. The lightning witnessed at places in Jagatsinghpur at around 5:51 in the evening today carried an electric current of 21 kA or 21000 volts. All the lightning detected today in Odisha are cloud to ground type, details private forecaster Meteologix.

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