Western Australia Seasonal Tropical Cyclone Outlook

Monday, 2 February 2015

Updated Tropical Cyclone Outlook for northwest Australia

Cyclone risk increasing during February

The Bureau of Meteorology today issued an updated Tropical Cyclone Seasonal Outlook for Western Australia for the next three months (February to April 2015).

As we pass the mid-point of the tropical cyclone season, the Bureau and the Department of Fire and Emergency Services (DFES) are urging people in the northwest not to become complacent.

Western Australia Acting Regional Manager of Severe Weather, Bradley Santos, said the second half of the season is often busier than the first and carries a higher chance of a severe tropical cyclone impact.

"As forecast, it has been a quiet start to the season, but it takes just one direct hit from a severe tropical cyclone or a major flood in your community for it to be a bad season," said Mr. Santos.

From the second week of February the risk of a tropical cyclone developing will increase, and we would expect to see at least one cyclone threaten the coast from then through to April," Mr. Santos said. "Cyclones that form during this period are more likely to become severe tropical cyclones (category 3 and above), so we often get our worst impacts in the second half of the season."

The Department of Fire and Emergency Service's Acting Assistant Commissioner Country, Mr. Stephen Johnston, echoed this advice by reminding residents of northern WA that we are in the middle of the cyclone and flood season, so it's important that people continue to remain vigilant. It is essential to have a plan in place so everyone in the family understands what cyclone warnings mean and what they must do. Preparations can be as simple as securing loose items around the home, trimming trees and preparing an emergency kit that includes a portable battery-operated radio."

Although no tropical cyclones have developed off the northwest coast to date, two tropical lows have produced heavy rain and minor flooding over northern and western parts of the Kimberley during January.

More information:

Further enquires to: Severe Weather Section
Email: sevwx_wa@bom.gov.au
Severe Weather Section, Bureau of Meteorology, Perth.
Information on preparing for cyclones and floods is available from the Department of Fire and Emergency Services: http://www.dfes.wa.gov.au/