- Two cyclones could form off Australian coast
- Wild weather to lash northern part of the country
Two cyclones could form off the Australian coast as soon as this weekend including one near Far North Queensland – just weeks after record flooding hit the region.
Help is still arriving for the far north after record flooding caused by Tropical Cyclone Jasper, with a $24 million tourism recovery and resilience program unveiled on Wednesday.
Prime Minister Anthony Albanese and Queensland Premier Steven Miles were in Cairns to announce the additional funding that will further support local tourism, clean-up efforts and invest in specialised recovery staff.
‘This beautiful place has been ravaged by this disaster, and we want to help far north Queensland get back on its feet as soon as possible,’ Mr Albanese said.
But more heavy downpours are set to hit the far north with a monsoon trough expected to develop in the Gulf of Carpentaria and turn into a tropical low by Friday.
‘From Sunday there is a low chance of … (the tropical low) strengthening into a tropical cyclone,’ the Bureau of Meteorology said on its website.
BoM showed another low forming off the coast of Western Australia and the Northern Territory potentially forming into a cyclone as well.
Weeks after record flooding hit the region, another cyclone threat may loom for far north Queensland with a tropical low set to form in the Gulf of Carpentaria
The chance of a cyclone forming in Queensland depends on the movement of another system west of Darwin called 03U.
‘If the other one (03U) doesn’t develop into a tropical cyclone then there is a slightly increased risk the other one in the Gulf (will develop), given there will be more energy in the trough system,’ a bureau spokesman said.
Even if it does not form into a cyclone, a tropical low in the Gulf will bring heavy rain to far north regions already reeling from devastating flooding after Jasper hit less than a month ago.
‘Along coastal parts of the Gulf daily falls of 100mm to 200mm wouldn’t be out of the question,’ the bureau spokesman said.
The far north is still recovering from December’s record downpours, with Mr Albanese and the premier flying over the flood-hit Cape Tribulation on Tuesday.
The prime minister pledged Australian Defence Force support for the devastated area before Wednesday’s funding announcement.
As part of the $24.25 million package, grants will be available for far north tourism operators hit hard by the disaster.
It will also fund a marketing campaign to attract more visitors back to the region.
Three cyclone resilience officers will be appointed to work with local industries, councils and farmers to support the recovery.
Prime Minister Anthony Albanese and Queensland Premier Steven Miles were in Cairns to announce the additional funding that will further support local tourism, clean-up efforts and invest in specialised recovery staff
BoM showed another low forming off the coast of Western Australia and the Northern Territory potentially forming into a cyclone as well
Recovery project managers will also be assigned to the worst hit areas, Wujal Wujal and Douglas Shire councils north of Cairns.
Work is still under way to clear the far north’s roads with the major Captain Cook Highway set to reopen between Ellis Beach and Port Douglas on January 20.
About 30,000 tonnes of mud and debris has already been removed from the road, with 15 trucks making about 100 trips a day.
A single lane won’t be open at the nearby Palmerston Highway until mid-February.
The prime minister and Mr Miles on Tuesday unveiled a $20 million disaster relief package for the state’s southeast which was hit hard by storms over the Christmas-New Year period.
Overall more than $50 million is expected for Queensland’s storm and cyclone recovery effort.
Queensland’s southeast may once again be struck by severe storms as it rebuilds.
A major recovery effort that may take years to complete is under way after seven people died in storm-related incidents with Scenic Rim, Logan and the Gold Coast the worst hit in the southeast.
The Bureau of Meteorology has warned Scenic Rim could be in for another drenching on Wednesday.