Severe Tropical Cyclone Alex

19 - 27 October 1981


The season commenced early with the development of Alex in late spring. An active convergence zone extended across the Indian Ocean just south of the equator in mid-October and a weak tropical low was identified from ship reports just south of this zone on 18 October. The system moved southeast and developed to tropical cyclone intensity at about 1800 UTC on the 19th. Peak intensity was reached at 2100 UTC 21 October with an estimated central pressure of 964 hPa and estimated maximum winds near the centre of 150 km/h.

The demise of Alex on the 27th was due to a shearing process as strong upper northwesterly winds swept the cloud away from the low level circulation.

Alex occurred west of 90°E when the Australian region extended to 80°E.