North Queensland authorities are warning residents not to be complacent about preparing for severe weather, despite the late start to the wet season.
The weather bureau says a low pressure system in the Coral Sea could develop into a cyclone next week but it is unlikely it will cross the Queensland coast.
It will be called Cyclone Oswald if it forms.
Townsville Mayor Jenny Hill says it is important new residents ensure they are ready ahead of the monsoon season.
"We need people to be aware that they are living in the tropics, particularly the new people who have moved up here in the last few weeks after Christmas," she said.
"There's procedures that they can put in place to ensure that if a cyclone was to form they would be adequately prepared to deal with the situation."
© ABC 2013
16:41 EDT Lightning strikes sparked fires in the roof spaces of two Canberra houses today as storms swept through the capital.