The Met Office has advised to hoist great danger signal No 10 for Mongla and Payra ports along with nine coastal districts in the region as very severe cyclone Bulbul may strike Bangladesh this afternoon.
The maritime port of Chattogram and five nearby districts have also been advised to hoist great danger signal No 9, according to a special bulletin of the Met office at 8am today.
Bhola, Barguna, Patuakhali, Barishal, Pirojpur, Jhalakathi, Bagerhat, Khulna and Satkhira, including nearby islands and char areas, are under great danger signal No 10.
Cyclone Bulbul is currently centred about 490km southwest of Chattogram, 480km southwest of Cox's Bazar, 310km southwest of Mongla and 335km southwest of Payra, according to the Met Office.
Meanwhile, the Met Office asked maritime port of Cox's Bazar to hoist warning signal No 4.
Five to seven feet high storm surge may hit the adjoining coastal belts, Met official said.
The cyclone intensified further and lied over Northwest Bay and adjoining west-central Bay in the morning.
When and where the cyclone Bulbul to hit in Bangladesh?
The cyclone might hit Bangladesh coast around Saturday evening, said Meteorologist Bazlur.
The Sundarbans area, Khulna, Satkhira, Bagerhat, Barguna, Patuakhali, Bhola and Pirojpur are likely to experience the hardest impact of the cyclone.
The cyclone will start to weaken once it makes the landfall.
Preparations taken by the government
The government has taken necessary preparations to tackle the impact of cyclone Bulbul.
A total of 14,000 packets of dry food and Tk35 lakh have been sent to the districts that are most likely to be hit by the cyclone, said State Minister for Disaster Management and Relief Dr Md Enamur Rahman.
In Khulna, the district authorities have opened 10 control rooms and nine adjacent upazilas to avoid loss and damage from the looming storm.
All vacations of the government employees in the region have been cancelled and ordered to remain stationed until further notice.
Chattogram district administration has taken all-out preparations to cope with any possible situation that might arise due to cyclonic storm Bulbul. The district administration has kept 3,000 shelter centres prepared for people.
Chattogram City Corporation has started evacuation of people from the most vulnerable areas to safer places and nearby cyclone centres.
In Cox's Bazar, the district administration has opened a control room and said it has finalised preparations to embrace the cyclone. A meeting of the district level disaster management committee was held on Friday afternoon.
Examinations for Saturday postponed
The Ministry of Education has postponed the Junior School Certificate (JSC) and Junior Dakhil Certificate (JDC) examination of Saturday as cyclone Bulbul approaches.
The postponed JSC exam will be held on November 12 and JDC exam will be held on November 14, a press release issued by the ministry confirmed.
Meanwhile, the National University has also postponed all examinations for Saturday due to the cyclone.
Khulna is experiencing constant rain as an effect of cyclone Bulbul in the Bay of Bengal.
Light to moderate rain has been persistent since Friday afternoon in the coastal district.
Local festival Rashmela in the Sundarbans' Dublar Char has been postponed due to adverse weather. As a result, six vessels carrying visitors to the fair from Khulna have turned back from Mongla, locals said.
Chattogram port temporarily stops loading activities
Chattogram port has shut down its loading activities temporarily this evening.
The action has been taken to keep the port's jetties and goods along with loading and unloading equipment safe, said port Secretary Omar Faruq.
The vessels waiting in the port are being sent to the sea to avoid damage to be caused by the heavy waves created by cyclones.
Cyclone Bulbul poses landslide risks for Rohingya refugees
Cox's Bazar is reeling under the wrath of the cyclonic storm, with over 11 lakh Rohingya refugees residing in the district.
The low-lying parts of the district have already been inundated. Landslides, triggered by torrential rain, is feared to devastate the Rohingya camps and shanties soon.
Cox's Bazar Deputy Commissioner Md Kamal Hosen briefed the press after the meeting. He said landslides may hit the Rohingya camps hard, and cyclonic storms may uproot the shanties.
Meanwhile, the disaster management committee has prepared a total of 538 cyclone shelters in eight upazilas of the district. Multi-storied educational institutions have been instructed to remain open so that people can take shelter there.
1200 tourists stranded at St Martin's Island
St Martin's Island Union Parishad Chairman Noor Ahmed said as many as 1,200 tourists have been stranded at the island as the ferry service between Teknaf and St Martin's has been suspended.
Why the cyclone is named Bulbul?
The cyclone "Bulbul" has been named by Pakistan. Bulbul is the name of a bird species. In 2000, India, Bangladesh, Pakistan Maldives, Myanmar, Oman, Sri Lanka and Thailand had come together to assign names to tropical cyclones originating over the Bay of Bengal and the Arabian Sea. The storm before Bulbul was named Maha by Oman. The one after this will be called Pawan, named by Sri Lanka.
Tropical cyclone Matmo is reborn as Bulbul. Matmo has just revived itself after travelling about 1,800km (1,118 miles) overland. This is an unusual, but not unique, event.
Matmo was formed in the Philippine Sea, the birthplace of so many tropical cyclones, on October 24. It formally became a tropical storm in the South China Sea on October 30, after having enhanced the rain over the central Philippines, causing floods.