Tropical Cyclone Raquel

Queensland Regional Office

Track of Tropical Cyclone Raquel

A near-record strength pulse in the Madden-Julian Oscillation (MJO) lead to a period of significant weather across much of the western Pacific Ocean during late June and early July. A tropical low formed to the northeast of the Solomon Islands in late June and tracked southwest towards the Solomon Islands before forming into a rare winter southern hemisphere tropical cyclone, named Raquel, on July 1st.

Raquel only lasted for a day as a tropical cyclone, before weakening back to a tropical low to the north of the Solomon Islands on July 2nd. Raquel threatened to reform over the following days, but failed to do so, mainly due to the presence of strong vertical wind shear.

The system moved across the Solomon Islands as a tropical low between July 3rd and 5th, delivering heavy rain and damaging wind gusts to some provinces. Munda (Western Province of the Solomon Islands) recorded 282mm of rainfall in the 24 hours to 10am AEST on July 5th. There were reports by the Solomon Islands Broadcasting Corporation of a landslide in the Western Province and some homes lost or damaged in the Western and Malaita Provinces.

Raquel was the first recorded tropical cyclone to form in the Eastern Region in July (since at least 1970) and also the third in the Eastern Region for the 2014-15 season.

Please note that the times used in the track map are in Australian Eastern Standard Time (AEST).

Extreme values during cyclone event (estimated)
Note that these values may be changed on the receipt of later information
Maximum Category: 1
Maximum sustained wind speed: 65 km/h
Maximum wind gust: 95 km/h
Lowest central pressure: 995 hPa