kajivar: (Muse // Clio Reading)
kajivar ([personal profile] kajivar) wrote in [community profile] disasterporn2009-05-02 11:17 pm
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This Day in History: Cyclone Nargis

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Cyclone Nargis was a strong tropical cyclone that caused the worst natural disaster in the recorded history of Burma (officially known as Myanmar). The cyclone made landfall in the country on May 2, 2008, causing catastrophic destruction and at least 146,000 fatalities with thousands more people still missing. The Labutta Township alone was reported to have 80,000 dead, with about 10,000 more deaths in Bogale. There were around 55,000 people missing and many other deaths were found in other towns and areas, although the Burmese government's official death toll was grossly underreported as they had simply stopped counting the dead to minimize political fallout. It was feared and quite possible that due to lack of relief efforts, a total of a million people already had or would have died from this catastrophe. Damage was estimated at over $10 billion (USD).

Nargis is the deadliest named cyclone in the North Indian Ocean Basin, as well as the second deadliest named cyclone of all time, behind Typhoon Nina of 1975. Including unnamed storms like the 1970 Bhola cyclone, Nargis is the 8th deadliest cyclone of all time, but an uncertainty between the deaths caused by Nargis and those caused by other cyclones (like the 1991 Bangladesh cyclone), could put Nargis as 7th deadliest or higher, because the exact death toll is unknown. Nargis was the first tropical cyclone to strike the country since Cyclone Mala made landfall in 2006, which was slightly stronger, but had a significantly lower impact.


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