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Perth weather: rare storm front to bring flooding, strong winds to batter WA

By Kate Leaver, Tuesday June 5, 2018 - 09:14 EST
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The cold front will be one of the worst to hit the state this year, according to the BOM. - ABC

Winter is expected to well and truly hit Perth, with a rare storm system and cold front set to batter the west coast, bringing destructive winds, high tides and localised flooding ahead of a week of wet weather.

A strengthening northerly flow and rain band ahead of a strong cold front will cause winds and rain to increase over western parts of the state on Monday and will move through the South West on Tuesday.

Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) duty forecaster Stephen McInerney warned the severe storm system and strong cold front would bring strong wind gusts.

"There is a risk of damaging winds of up to 100 kilometres per hour as the front moves through on Tuesday morning, with the slight risk that we could see destructive gusts of in excess of 125kph in Perth," he said.

The Gascoyne region is predicted to be hardest hit, with total rainfalls of up to 100mm forecast, which could result in localised flooding.

"The rainfall through the Gascoyne and the Pilbara for this event is unusual for this time for year … for June it's quite rare that you get this type of rain," he said.

"There is a chance of some localised flooding because of the heavy rain."

Residents in the Pilbara, South West and Gascoyne regions are being warned to secure their properties, and tie down and pack away objects that might cause damage.

"As the front moves through the South West of the state, there is that chance we will see those damaging winds for coastal areas between Exmouth [and] Walpole, so pretty much the whole west coast," Mr McInerney said.

"In that type of situation you can often see damage to homes and also damage to trees."

While the conditions will not be favourable for surfers because of gale force winds, BOM is warning people not to enter the water in the Geographe Bay region.

"We are also expecting quite high tides of up to 1.5 metres all the way from Shark Bay to Cape Leeuwin as this system moves through … around Busselton we are expecting some quite high tides and potential for beach erosion," he said.

Mr McInerney said although the conditions , the region had not seen the same prolonged dry spell beforehand.

"Conditions may well be similar [to the Albany bushfire weather conditions] as the front moves through because again because we aren't expecting huge amounts of rain around the Albany region," he said.

Albany Mayor Dennis Wellington said property owners in the Great Southern needed to make sure any private burns were extinguished to avoid a repeat of last month's bushfire emergency.

"Just don't light any fires," he said.

"We're told it's the same sort of intensity as the last one with the northerly wind aspect. The west coast will get a bucket load of rain and we'll get a very small amount as it comes across from that northerly aspect, which we don't get a lot.

"But we just hope the intensity of the wind isn't quite the same as it was last time."

A Department of Parks and Wildlife Service spokeswoman said it had no prescribed burns scheduled when the approaching system is due to hit.


© ABC 2018

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