Cyclone Yasi roars towards Queensland
Wed, 02 Feb 2011 7:00a.m.
Cyclone Yasi has been upgraded to a category five cyclone as it roars towards Queensland.
The cyclone which rivals Hurricane Katrina is expected to hit the Queensland coast at about 10pm tonight and authorities warn it poses an “extremely serious threat to life and property, especially between Port Douglas and Townsville".
The eye of the cyclone is 35km wide over Willis Islets and is expected to take an hour to pass over.
“This impact is likely to be more life threatening than any experienced during recent generations,” said Queensland police in a statement this morning.
"It will be unsafe to be outside after midday today from Douglas to Townsville."
The Queensland Premier, Anna Bligh has warned that flooding from a storm surge, caused by high winds pushing water onshore, could be more dangerous than wind and flying debris.
''It will be a display of the awesome power of nature but it's not something you want to go outside and watch,'' she told the Sydney Morning Herald.
A storm surge is expected to reach 2.5 metres above the highest tide, inundating Cairns CBD and when the eye of the storm strikes land at about midnight, wind gusts up to 300km/h are likely to cause “significant damage”.
Cairns is in line for a direct hit according to computer models, said a senior meteorologist from the Bureau of Meteorology, Ann Farrell.
''It is possible it could reach category five intensity and that would push winds up to around the 300km/h mark,'' she said. Evacuation orders have been given to people in high-risk areas from Cooktown to Hinchinbrook Island.
Carla Jenkins, a 23-year-old Cairns resident and flight attendant, was feeling jittery as her plane coasted to a halt at the Cairns airport on Tuesday night. Jenkins lived through Cyclone Larry, which slammed into the region in 2006, and feared Yasi would be even more brutal.
"One of the scariest things I remember (from Larry) was on the radio, they said, 'Fear for your life,'" said Jenkins, who was planning to ride out the storm in her house.
"I've got a feeling this is going to be worse. So I'm just a bit freaked out," she told The Associated Press.
Ms Bligh has described the cyclone as a “killer storm”.
"I know many of us will feel that Queensland has already borne about as much as we can bear when it comes to disasters and storms," she said.
"But more is being asked of us."
Cairns, a city of some 164,000 people and a gateway for visitors to the Great Barrier Reef, was in the path to bear the brunt of the storm.
But wind warnings of various degrees of strength were issued for a stretch of coast some 1,600km long, from the remote community Cape Melville to the port city of Gladstone.
In Cairns, more than 9,000 people in low-lying and coastal parts were ordered to evacuate their homes as the sea is expected to surge at least two metres and flood significant parts of the city.
The military has airlifted 250 patients from the waterfront Cairns Base and Cairns Private hospitals to Brisbane, the state capital about 1,700km south. Elderly care homes were also being evacuated.
"In reality, we would like people to get as far south as possible, as quickly as possible, without of course breaking the rules," said Ian Stewart, the state's disaster coordinator, told reporters.
Ms Bligh said the situation and exact impact of the cyclone would become clearer this afternoon.
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5/02/2011 1:15:48 a.m.
I have family in Inglewood, has anyone any idea how bad it was there please?
3/02/2011 5:53:47 p.m.
They are having tides bigger than New Zealands Tsunami's
3/02/2011 1:24:43 a.m.
Virgin you greedy glottonic pigs humanlife is more important than money shame on your headoffice. May God bless all those effected! You should of charged nothing or ateast something people could afford so disgusting Virgin you'll get nothing from me ever again.
2/02/2011 9:24:02 p.m.
Jo field wrote:
Can you believe the ticket prices doubled!!they should have halved!!shame virgin shame...Sir Richard wheres your philanthropic heart!!
2/02/2011 6:42:54 p.m.
out thoughts for every ones safety ,it could be any one of us to be effected best of luck to all of us
2/02/2011 6:41:28 p.m.
2/02/2011 3:30:26 p.m.
Sandy, Hopefully you have heard from your son by now. But just in case you haven't I have some contact details for you.There is a phone number to call 1300 993 191 or website redcross.org.auPeople who are unsure where to go are registering their details with these areas.I hope you get in touch with him. ~Diana~ XOXOXO
2/02/2011 2:55:53 p.m.
une petite photo du cyclone YASI biz bonne journée
2/02/2011 1:20:07 p.m.
Maybe these links will help you find out some more info.
I hope all is well.
2/02/2011 12:57:40 p.m.
no idea sandy but he will be ok aussies look after pple in times of crisis,and fones are very busy up that way,but this may help good luck =]Affected residents are being urged to register their details with authorities by calling 1300 993 191.
Inquiries about people caught up in the cyclone emergency can be made to the same number. International inquiries can be made via +61 7 3055 6220.
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