India to Yemen on Alert for Tropical Cyclone Nilofar

National Yemen

An area of low pressure over the Arabian Sea has become better organized and is now Tropical Cyclone Nilofar.

A slow drift northwestward is expected through the weekend keeping the cyclone over warm ocean waters and relatively low wind shear.

These conditions will promote further strengthening, and the cyclone will likely reach the equivalent of a strong tropical storm or hurricane by early this week.

There are a couple of scenarios for where the developing cyclone will slam onshore with damaging winds, flooding rain and dangerously rough seas next week.

One possibility is that the cyclone would take more of a westward track, causing it to threaten eastern Yemen or Oman by Tuesday into Wednesday. Life-threatening flooding appears to be the greatest concern; however, coastal areas could be battered by damaging winds depending on how strong the cyclone becomes.

After a possible landfall in Oman, the storm may be pulled northeastward, crossing back over the Arabian Sea and bringing potentially heavy rainfall to parts of Pakistan and northwestern India later this week.

If the storm continues northwest but remains over the Arabian Sea early this week, interaction with a weak dip in the jet stream to the north will continue to pull the cyclone north to northeast with an eventual landfall in Pakistan or northwestern India as a significant cyclone capable of producing damaging winds, flooding and mudslides.

Since several factors will determine the exact track of Nilofar, anyone with interests in the southern Arabian Peninsula, Pakistan or northwestern India should monitor this situation closely in the coming days.