Weather News

Race is on for Lucas and Marian

Ben Domensino, Thursday January 21, 2021 - 09:09 EDT

Two tropical cyclones are likely to form in the Australian region this week and one is on track to hit Western Australia, but their names are still up in the air.

The next two tropical cyclones to develop in Australia's area of responsibility will be named Lucas and Marian respectively. These are the next two cyclone names in a predetermined list maintained by the Bureau of Meteorology. The list runs in alphabetical order and alternates between male and female.

So, will Lucas or Marian hit Western Australia this week?

On Thursday morning, there were two tropical lows spinning over water off the coast of Western Australia.

Image: Infrared satellite image at 2am AWST, showing two tropical lows highlighted by the green circles. The low on the left is '10U' and the low on the right is '08U'.

One of these tropical lows, which has been designated 08U, was located about 430 km to the north northwest of Broome at 2am AWST on Thursday.

08U is expected to move towards Western Australia's north coast and become a tropical cyclone on Friday. At this stage, it is likely to make landfall along the eastern Pilbara coast as a category two system on Saturday.

The other low, designated 10U, was about 140km to the east of the Cocos (Keeling) Islands at 2:00am AWST on Thursday.

10U is expected to strengthen more quickly and could reach tropical cyclone strength early on Friday morning, shortly after passing close to the Cocos (Keeling) Islands.

As of Thursday morning, the tropical low that's out near the Cocos (Keeling) Islands is expected to become a tropical cyclone first and be named Lucas. This would make the other low, that's on track to make landfall in Western Australia, named Marian.

Regardless of their names, both of these systems could bring severe weather to communities in northern districts of Western Australia and on the Cocos (Keeling) Islands. Be sure to keep up to date with the latest advisories for these developing systems.

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