Tropical Cyclone Seasonal Outlook for the Northern Territory

IDD10755

Australian Government Bureau of Meteorology
Northern Territory

Warm oceans and La Nina could cause early start to cyclone season

Issued at 4:52 pm CST on Tuesday 11 October 2022.

Communities across the Northern Territory are being urged to start preparing now for the cyclone season following predictions that tropical cyclones and floods could impact the NT earlier than usual this year.

The Bureau of Meteorology's forecast of an early start to the season in its 2022-23 Tropical Cyclone Outlook is based on warmer ocean temperatures driven by a negative Indian Ocean Dipole and an active La Nina.

These conditions typically lead to more tropical cyclones and tropical lows during the cyclone season, which extends from 1 November to 30 April.

During the 2022-23 season, the forecast is for around a 60% chance of an above average number of tropical cyclones in the Northern Region.

On average, 3 tropical cyclones occur in the Northern Region every wet season. The Northern region extends from the western tip of Cape York in Queensland around to Kuri Bay in WA.

While the Bureau's Tropical Cyclone Outlook provides guidance about whether the season will be more or less active than normal, it only takes one system to significantly impact a community.

Tropical cyclones and tropical lows can cause significant damage to property and put lives at risk with associated strong winds, heavy rainfall, flooding and storm surges.

In the 2021 2022 cyclone season only one tropical cyclone crossed the NT coastline.

A tropical low developed off the coast of Darwin on 23 December 2021 and later crossed the coast near Dundee early on Boxing Day without reaching tropical cyclone strength. This system moved east and went on to develop into Tropical Cyclone Seth in Coral Sea off the coast of Queensland

Tropical Cyclone Tiffany formed in the Coral Sea off the coast of Qld on 9 January 2022 and moved west across far north Qld. The system weakened to a tropical low as it passed over land before redeveloping in the Gulf of Carpentaria and crossing the Northern Territory coastline near the community of Numbulwar as a Category 2 Tropical Cyclone on 12 January 2022.

Tropical Cyclone Anika formed in the Timor Sea on 25 February 2022 and crossed the western Kimberley coast in WA at category 2 intensity late on 26 February. Anika caused a brief reinvigoration of the monsoon over the Top End, bringing heavy rainfall to the northwestern coast of the NT during the last week of February.

More information:

  • Alerts and Warnings: securent.nt.gov.au/alerts

  • Tropical cyclone warnings and information: bom.gov.au/cyclone

  • National Tropical Cyclone Outlook: bom.gov.au/climate/cyclones/australia

  • NT rainfall and river conditions: bom.gov.au/nt/flood

  • Preparing for cyclones: securent.nt.gov.au/prepare-for-an-emergency/weather-events/cyclones

  • Tropical Cyclone Knowledge Centre: bom.gov.au/cyclone/tropical-cyclone-knowledge-centre/

  • Further enquires to: the Bureau's Media Hotline

  • Email: media@bom.gov.au

  • Phone: 03 9669 4057

  • Information on preparing for cyclones and floods is available from Secure NT https://securent.nt.gov.au/

Further information: