DMIS: Bangladesh | Tropical cyclone | Tornado in Eastern Bangladesh

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Brief description of the situation

A powerful tornado ripped through more than a dozen rural villages in eastern Bangladesh late Friday (23rd March 2013), killing at least 17 people and injuring more than 200, officials said.
The tornado wreaked havoc in Brahmanbaria district over a 15-minute period, authorities said, uprooting thousands of trees and flattened hundreds of tin and mud-built houses in the area, and snapping road and rail communication with affected villages. Most of the affected population has been living in the open air since the storm, trying to construct makeshift dwellings on the site of their original homes.Villages of Brahmanbaria Shadar Upazila (sub district) and Akhaura Upazila are most affected where the tornado took place. Sadar Upazila UNO (Upazila Nirbahi Officer) Ripon Chakma said 14 people were killed in Sadar upazila, while Akhaura UNO Bashirul Haque Bhuiyan confirmed the death of three in his upazila. Based on initial assessment, around 1,200 families are affected.

Government district administrator Nur Mohammad said to AFP that “It was so powerful that it overturned dozens of motor vehicles and big trucks”. He also said that the persons who died were mostly hit by fallen trees or collapsed walls.
District police Chief M. Moniruzzaman said of the 100 people hospitalized, up to 12 people were in a critical condition. “Many of the injured were rushed to hospitals in cities including the capital Dhaka,” he told AFP.
Vehicular movement on Comilla-Sylhet highway remained snapped for about two hours as roadside trees being uprooted fell on it during the tornado. A bus also fell into a roadside ditch, leaving several passengers injured. The injured were rushed to Sadar Hospital and different clinics.
Volunteers of the Bangladesh Red Crescent Society (BDRCS) Brahmanbaria district unit are on the ground for search and rescue. BDRCS deployed its National Disaster Response Team (NDRT) for damage and need assessment and one medical team for immediate assistance.

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