More than 115,000 Bangladeshis left their coastal villages on Sunday for concrete storm shelters further inland as the low-lying nation prepared for crashing waves when a cyclone makes landfall, officials said.

Cyclone Remal is set to hit the southern coast and parts of neighboring India on Sunday evening, with Bangladesh's weather department predicting howling gales and gusts of up to 130 kilometers (81 miles) per hour.

Cyclones have killed hundreds of thousands of people in Bangladesh in recent decades, but the number of superstorms hitting its densely populated coast has increased sharply — from one a year to as many as three — due to the impact of climate change.