Kristy Gordon-Cooke captured the light show over White Rock during Tuesday’s storms.

BOM says chance of Queensland cyclone increasing

THE possibility of a tropical cyclone in the Far North in the next few months is looming as conditions for a significant weather event brew in the Coral Sea.

Bureau of Meteorology duty forecaster Annabelle Ford said a weather pattern indicator developing in the Coral Sea gave meteorologists an insight into the likelihood of a cyclone crossing Cairns.

She said the weather pattern indicator, called a Madden-Julian Oscillation, was a collection of clouds, rainfall, winds and pressure that moved in an easterly direction through the tropics and re-emerged at its starting point every 30 to 60 days.

"There is a tropical wave Madden-Julian Oscillation, which is expected to enter the Coral Sea in late January or early February," she said.

"Having a Madden-Julian Oscillation in the Coral Sea can increase the likelihood of a monsoon burst, which in turn will increase the likelihood of a tropical cyclone.

WEATHER: How cyclones affect the lives of residents in Far North Queensland

"It's too early to really say when it will be, but at some point a cyclone can be expected."

Ms Ford said the lead-up to a cyclone often involved heavy rain.

"There's a weak La Nina at the moment, which brings a higher rainfall to the Cairns area," she said.

"For the February to April period there's a 60-65 per cent chance of above-average rainfall for the wet season."

The region had a taste of wet and windy conditions earlier this week as storm water covered

roads and wind knocked down trees from Gordonvale to Kuranda.

Far Northern State Emergency Service regional director Wayne Coutts said the recent wet weather was a reminder for Cairns residents to prepare for cyclones.

He said everyone living in Cairns should have an emergency kit ready year-round for when unexpected extreme weather set in across the Far North.

"We've seen in recent days how quickly the weather can change," he said.

"An emergency kit should consist of food and water for at least three days, a flashlight, first aid kit, extra batteries and cell phone charges.

"All households should also have an emergency plan containing contacts for emergency services, electricity and other service providers, relatives, friends and neighbours."


Scattered showers will continue along the coast across the next few days.

Heavy showers will return from Sunday afternoon and continue through to next week with storms returning midweek.

Today: Min 23C, max 32C, mostly morning showers with a 60 per cent chance of rain.

Tomorrow: Min 23C, max 33C, partly cloudy with a 20 per cent chance of rain.

Sunday: Min 23C, max 33C, a late shower or two with a 50 per cent chance of rain.