Weather News

Cyclone Dylan bears down on North Queensland as locals brace for destructive winds

Friday January 31, 2014 - 04:42 EDT

Residents in North Queensland are gearing up for destructive winds as Cyclone Dylan is expected to make landfall early this morning.

The system began as a tropical low in the Coral Sea several days ago but officially became a category two cyclone yesterday evening.

Authorities are on cyclone alert across the region.

Bureau of Meteorology forecaster Andrew Bufalino says it should cross the coast between Ayr and Bowen, packing wind gusts of 150 kilometres an hour.

The weather bureau says the cyclone is north-east of Townsville and moving south-west.

Strong gales are expected along much of the coast between Cardwell and St Lawrence.

The weather bureau is warning residents to expect winds to increase overnight between Lucinda and St Lawrence, with destructive winds up to 150km an hour near the cyclone's centre.

It also says heavy rain in the area may lead to flash-flooding.

Townsville Mayor Jenny Hill says conditions are not too bad at the moment.

"We are not seeing the sort of winds that are hitting Ayr and Burdekin; we have had some rain that's died away and just a bit of a heavy breeze," she said.

There has been local flooding from Mackay to Cairns, but no major damage.

The Whitsunday Local Disaster Management Group has issued a storm surge warning for residents in Bowen and Airlie Beach and residents should prepare for the possibility of flooding on Friday morning.


© ABC 2014

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