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Cyclone Sandra forms off Qld coast

Friday March 8, 2013 - 12:13 EDT

The weather bureau says Queenslanders should not be overly concerned about a cyclone that has formed off the state's northern coast.

The bureau says Queensland's second cyclone of the season formed in the Coral Sea overnight, about 990 kilometres north-east of Mackay.

The category one system is slowly moving north-east and is predicted to intensify over the next 24 hours.

Bureau senior forecaster Bryan Rolstone says cyclone Sandra is expected to turn southwards over the weekend but not affect the coast.

"A positive thing may come out of it as the cyclone moves away, it'll turn the winds more southerly eventually and the showers will decrease," he said.

Many coastal communities are still cleaning up after ex-tropical cyclone Oswald caused widespread flooding earlier this year.

It is predicted the system will remain well out to sea until at least the middle of next week.

Mr Rolstone says it is posing no real concern for flood-weary communities.

"We're probably not going to see any heavy rain," he said.

"You'll still get the strong winds though like we've got right now and that will continue into next week and the showers will continue because that's south-easterlies.

"The only benefit as the system moves past us into the Southern Ocean - it will turn the winds more southerly by the middle of next week and eventually the showers will clear up."


© ABC 2013

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