Mahasen quiets Ctg port, EPZs
Loading and unloading at Chittagong Port were brought to a halt as the authorities put the port on a security alert yesterday when Cyclone Mahasen was around 800 kilometres off Bangladesh coast.
A total of 21 vessels anchored in jetties were taken to outer encourage to keep the port channel free and safe, Captain Nazmul Alam, deputy conservator of Chittagong Port Authority, said.
Also, the authorities of Shah Amanat International Airport in Chittagong decided to close the airport from yesterday afternoon due to the inclement weather caused by Mahasen.
The cyclone prompted danger signal no. 7 in Chittagong and Cox's Bazar and signal no. 5 at Mongla Port.
The authorities also decided to shift all the equipment of the airport, said Rabiul Islam, manager of the airport.
Three aircraft-- two of Bangladesh Biman and one of United Airways -- that were staying at the airport were asked to leave, he said.
“We will resume operations after the signal is lowered,” he said.
Meanwhile, Bangladesh Export Processing Zones Authority (Bepza) asked all the enterprises at Chittagong EPZ and Karnaphuli EPZ to close the factories since 2pm yesterday so that the workers could go home to take care of their belongings, said SM Abdur Rashid, general manager of Bepza, Chittagong.
Bangladesh Navy has taken all their operational ships from Chittagong to Mongla, Kaptai and Dhaka, said Commander Jamil Ashraf, naval provost marshal, Chittagong.
“We are prepared to respond to any emergency call for rescue operations,” he said, adding, “Our medical teams are ready.”
MA Latif, a local Awami League lawmaker, visited the coastal belt of his constituency and supervised the evacuation activities.
Around seven lakh people of the area were asked to move and take a safe shelter, he said, adding that dry food and drinking water were distributed among them.
Mahasen was likely to cross the coastline by this morning.