Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Cyclone Bubul leaves over 1,000 tourists stranded in Saint Martin's Island

  • Cox’s Bazar Correspondent,  bdnews24.com
    Published: 2019-11-08 20:41:45 BdST

Inclement weather under the influence of Cyclone Bulbul has left more than 1,000 tourists stranded at Saint Martin's Island in Cox's Bazar.

It has halted the vessel movement on the Teknaf-Saint Martin's waterway route since Friday morning, trapping people who had gone to visit the popular tourist spot, according to Teknaf Upazila Nirbahi Officer (UNO) Mohammad Saiful Islam.

“More than 1,000 tourists who went there before and after Thursday have been stranded.”

The Met Office has asked the maritime ports to raise dangers signals due to the storm in the Bay of Bengal.

The cyclonic storm under the influence of seasonal weather intensified into a very severe cyclonic storm over the Bay of Bengal, said Assistant Meteorologist Abdur Rahman of the Cox's Bazar Regional Office.

It was centred between around 500 and 600 kilometres from the ports and is likely to cross Bangladesh coastline on Saturday night, said meteorologist Abdur Rahman.

Maximum wind speed is likely to rise up to 140 kph in gusts and squalls during the storm, according to the Met Office.

At present, four tourist vessels are operating on the Teknaf-Saint Martin's waterway route, according to the UNO.

The local administration has been directed to take steps to ensure that the trapped tourists do not face any difficulties and misery, he added.

“Arrangements will be made to bring back the stranded tourists if the weather improves,” said Saiful.

The residential hotels and restaurants have been advised to take steps for ensuring the safety of the tourists, said Nur Ahmad, chairman of Saint Martin's Union Council.

The hotel authorities have also been instructed to charge tourists half the price in room rent. Similar instructions have also been given to the hotels and restaurants, said the chairman.