15 killed after twin storms at 98 km/hr lashes West Bengal

Nellie Chapman
April 20, 2018

Almost 50 people were injured in incidents of wall collapse, uprooting of trees and electrocution, the police said.

5 other massacre was reported in the city of joy, Kolkata, and the other 2 killed in the Bankura district and one in Howrah district, police told.

The daily said the storm, the fastest to hit West Bengal since Cyclone Aila in 2009, uprooted 120 trees.

Among the seven casualties in the city, an autorickshaw driver and a woman died when a tree fell on the vehicle on Lenin Sarani in central Kolkata, the police said. Two others died after they were taken to the hospital and succumbed to their injuries late last night.

Of the six deaths in Howrah, four died after getting struck by lightning in Bali and Belur towns, while a motorcycle rider died on Andul Road after an electric pole collasped due to the storm and fell on him.

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The Met department had earlier warned of severe thunderstorms with wind speed reaching up to 65 to 70 kilometres per hour in large parts of West Bengal. 12 people were killed and several others injured.

According to government estimates, some 303 trees in Kolkata and Howrah were uprooted, 225 electricity posts were damaged and 56 villages of South 24 Parganas were badly affected.

Regional Meteorological Director G K Das confirms "A nor'wester hit the city with a gale force of 98 km per hour around 7.42 pm". Around 200 trees were uprooted in 26 places and also resulted in traffic disruption.

People returning home after work faced traffic jams and snarls, as metro and train services were hit.

Mamata Banerjee, state chief minister has instructed the chief secretary to look into the situation and prepare a report on the deaths and damage caused by the storm.

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