Gaja moving slowly toward southern India

11/14/2018 3:19:08 PM

As of Wednesday afternoon, EST, Cyclonic Storm Gaja is located approximately 265 miles east-southeast of Chennai, India. Gaja is tracking to the west-southwest at about 8 mph. Maximum sustained winds are 45-50 mph, with gusts to 60 mph, according to the India Meteorological Department.

Gaja is forecast to strengthen somewhat over the next 12-24 hours, possibly briefly to a severe cyclonic storm. After that, weakening is expected before landfall along the southern Tamil Nadu coast of India on Thursday afternoon or night, local time. The main impact will be locally flooding rainfall in parts of southern India. Damaging wind can also occur, especially in coastal areas near the point of landfall.

Gaja will pass close enough to the northern tip of Sri Lanka that bands of heavy rain and gusty winds will impact northern parts of the island, though the worst of the conditions may remain just offshore and into southern Tamil Nadu.

To the south, an area of tropical low pressure is located in the South Indian Ocean about 345 miles southwest of Jakarta, Indonesia. Satellite imagery shows some convection around a low-level center, and there is some chance for it to strengthen and become better organized at is moves mainly toward the southwest.

By AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist John Gresiak

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