Residents get warning on wild weather season
Despite last week’s fizzer, cyclone experts are warning Pilbara residents not to get complacent because the season is still set to be “above average” for wild weather.
Karratha received 130.4mm of rainfall last month, the largest amount for the past three years and well above the town’s mean of 47.2mm over the three years since 2014.
Port Hedland recorded 92mm of rain last month, well above the 11.6mm for January 2016, and only 20mm short of the bumper wet season total in January 2014. Bureau of Meteorology spokesman Neil Bennett said weather forecasters were still expecting the season to be above average from the period of January to March.
“It has certainly been a very wet season in the Northern Kimberley,” he said.
“It is fairly safe to say it is likely (the season) will be average or above for many parts”
According to the bureau, the average rainfall record for February to April for Karratha is 106mm and Port Hedland is 156mm in the same period.
Last week, areas in the North West including Karratha and Port Hedland went into blue alert as weather forecasters monitored a tropical low off the the WA coast.
Roebourne and Onslow police said residents had generally behaved well in the alert period in the wind and rain.
“People were pretty good on the roads; they didn’t go flying through the water or do their vehicles any damage,” Onslow police officer-in-charge Sergeant Kevin Jones said.
“We had a bit of rain over the weekend, but nothing to create any problems and we haven’t had any flood fall-outs.”
The Department of Fire and Emergency services lifted the alert on Sunday .
DFES Pilbara district officer Paul Leiper said residents acted responsibly and the service had received minimal requests of aid from the community.
However, he said they had received two separate requests from incidents in the same location at the De Grey river catchment the previous week.
He said one incident involved a family of three who became bogged after camping at the De Grey River overnight and the other involved a male on his own who became bogged.