The Indian Seas are well known as the deadliest basin for severe cyclones in the world. The frequency of storms is generally more in the Bay of Bengal, in comparison to the Arabian Sea, but severity takes an almost equal toll on either side.
There are two seasons for formation of cyclonic storms namely, pre-monsoon (April and May) and post-monsoon (October to December). June onwards depressions start forming in the Bay of Bengal, which bring monsoon showers. However, cyclones could develop over the Arabian Sea till about third week of June, even when the monsoon is in progress. As the monsoon current penetrates deep into inland, the possibility of cyclones decreases.
History of Cyclones in pre-monsoon season
We generally see an appreciable increase in the frequency of storms from April to May. However, there is no definite distribution and every year does not witness cyclone formation.
In last ten years, 3 cyclones developed only in the Bay of Bengal, in the month of April. These were Mala (2006), Nargis (2008) and Bijli (2010). In May, cyclones have originated both in the Arabian Sea and Bay of Bengal. In the last decade, Aila (2009), Bandu (2010) and Mahasen (2013), were among the named cyclones. The effects of Nargis spilled over to the month of May as well, in 2008. All the three cyclones that occurred in June, namely Gonu (2007), Phet (2010) and Nanauk (2014), had developed in the Arabian Sea.
Gonu was the strongest named cyclone in the Arabian Sea. The year 2010 received 3 cyclones in the pre-monsoon season, which is quite unusual.
This April, we did not witness any cyclone. Going by the weather models, we could say that May will also not see the formation of any cyclone. A low-pressure area will develop in the Andaman Sea by the middle of the month. The system will stay very close to the Arakan coast of Myanmar, but it will not enter deep into the sea. It will bring good showers along the coastal areas.
Image credit -Biswaranjan Rout