Published on: March 15, 2023

Cyclone Freddy

Cyclone Freddy

Why in news? Cyclone Freddy pounded central Mozambique and Malawi again , after making landfall twice in a month shattering records for the duration and strength of tropical storms in the southern hemisphere.


  • Freddy, developed off the coast of western Australia in the first week of February, was expected to become the longest-lasting tropical cyclone ever that tracked across the Indian Ocean for more than five weeks in February and March 2023, according to the World Meteorological Organization, UN.
  • It swept through Madagascar beginning and the entire southern Indian Ocean until making landfall in Mozambique and pounded in Malawi again.

About Cyclone Freddy

  • It was the fourth named storm of the 2022–23 Australian region cyclone season, and the second very intense tropical cyclone of the 2022–23 South-West Indian Ocean cyclone season.
  • Countries affected are Mascarene Islands, Madagascar, Mozambique. Zimbabwe and Malawi
  • Freddy holds the record as the longest-lasting tropical cyclone worldwide, beating the previous record of Hurricane John in 1994.
  • It was the first tropical cyclone to undergo seven separate rounds of rapid intensification .
  • Freddy was one of only four systems to traverse the entirety of the southern Indian Ocean from east to west, the others were cyclones Litanne, Leon–Eline and Hudah.

What is tropical cyclone ?

  • A tropical cyclone is a warm-core, low pressure system without any “front” attached, that develops over the tropical or subtropical waters, and has an organized circulation.

What are Characteristics of tropical cyclones?

  • A tropical cyclone is a rapid rotating storm originating over tropical oceans from where it draws the energy to develop.
  • It has a low pressure centre and clouds spiraling towards the eyewall surrounding the “eye”, the central part of the system where the weather is normally calm and free of clouds.
  • Its diameter is typically around 200 to 500 km, but can reach 1000 km.
  • A tropical cyclone brings very violent winds, torrential rain, high waves and, in some cases, very destructive storm surges and coastal flooding.
  • The winds blow counter clockwise in the Northern Hemisphere and clockwise in the Southern Hemisphere.
  • Tropical cyclones above a certain strength are given names in the interests of public safety.

The  Different terminology used for this weather phenomenon:

  • In the Caribbean Sea, the Gulf of Mexico, the North Atlantic Ocean and the eastern and central North Pacific Ocean, it is called “hurricane”
  • In the western North Pacific, it is called “typhoon”
  • In the Bay of Bengal and Arabian Sea, it is called “cyclone
  • In western South Pacific and southeast Indian Ocean, it is called “severe tropical cyclone”
  • In the southwest Indian Ocean, it is called “tropical cyclone”