The storm is on the brink of Category 5 status
29 October 2019| Last updated on 29 October 2019
Image credit: NASA
It's the largest storm the Arabian Sea has seen in over 12 years...
Dubbed a top-tier 'super cyclonic storm' by the India Meteorological Department, Tropical Cyclone Kyarr is the first storm of such intensity to appear in the Arabian Sea in over a decade.
Following days of gaining momentum, the storm further intensified on Monday. But while Kyarr will largely remain out to sea, the storm's increasing size has caused officials in both India and Oman to raise the alarm to residents in coastal areas.
Packing winds of around 150 mph, Kyarr was situated about 600km off the coastline of the Sultanate early this week with no signs of weakening. According to an update shared by the Public Authority for Civil Aviation (PACA), "the closest rainy clouds are at a distance of about 360 km."
On Monday night, many coastal areas of Oman experienced high waves and seawater flooding into houses. The Public Authority for Civil Defense and Ambulance (PACDA) is prepared to deal with any effects of the tropical cyclone and is calling on Omani citizens and residents to track bulletins issued by authorities.
Credit: PACA | Satellite image shows the cyclone's expected track this week
Individuals who have plans to go out to sea should avoid doing so unless absolutely necessary. Since "sea conditions along the coasts of South Al Sharqiyah, Al Wustar and Dhofar will be moderate to rough, with a maximum wave height ranging between two and three metres", says the Department of Meteorology.
The good news is since Kyarr is a good distance Oman, it's expected to turn southwest and then track parallel to the coast.
The only stronger storm on record in the Arabian Sea was 2007’s category 5 Tropical Cyclone Gonu, which inflicted the most widespread damage in Oman despite weakening by landfall.