Time to be pre­pared

Con­sen­sus builds on like­li­hood of cyclone de­vel­op­ing

Whitsunday Times - - NEWS - Ja­cob Wil­son ja­cob.wil­son@whit­sun­day­times.com.au

ALL MA­JOR com­puter mod­els apart from one pre­dict a cyclone will de­velop in the Coral Sea, ac­cord­ing to Mackay and Dis­trict Weather Up­dates.

The low pres­sure sys­tem south-east of Pa­pua New Guinea is ex­pected to de­velop into a cyclone by Saturday and drift south-west.

Bureau of Me­te­o­rol­ogy fore­caster Dean Mar­ramore said while the low pres­sure sys­tem was likely to in­ten­sify, it was hard to pre­dict which di­rec­tion it would move.

“Some mod­els see it mov­ing to­ward Queens­land and oth­ers fur­ther south, but a ma­jor­ity have it track­ing west,” he said.

“How strong it will be and where it hits is un­cer­tain at this stage.”

Fel­low BOM fore­caster Rick Threlfall warned that ev­ery­one should be pre­pared.

“We are well into cyclone sea­son now and peo­ple need to look at fore­casts and keep cyclone plans in place,” he said.

Mr Threlfall con­ceded pre-sea­son pre­dic­tions of an “above av­er­age” cyclone sea­son had not come to pass.

“It has been a lot qui­eter than ex­pected and peo­ple are scratch­ing their heads and won­der­ing why it played out that way with La Nina-like con­di­tions around,” he said.

“So many things go into form­ing cy­clones that there is prob­a­bly some other as­pect be­hind it that would stop cy­clones from form­ing.”

In the mean­time, the Whit­sun­day re­gion is ex­pected to be in for sub­stan­tial rain­fall for the rest of the week, with an 80–90% chance of show­ers ev­ery day from Thursday through to the week­end.

Peo­ple are en­cour­aged to reg­u­larly check the Trop­i­cal Cyclone Out­look for the Coral Sea on the BOM web­site.

CYCLONE WATCH: A low pres­sure sys­tem in the Coral Sea is ex­pected to de­velop into a cyclone by Saturday. IN­SET: Ve­hi­cles nav­i­gate around a fallen pow­er­line over Shute Har­bour Rd af­ter cyclone Ului hit.

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