Tropical low expected to reach cyclone intensity tomorrow

COMMUNITIES located between Arnhem Land and Cape York Peninsula are being asked to finalise their preparations as a tropical low develops in the area.  

The Bureau of Meteorology (BoM) advised that, as at 2.30pm on Monday 16 February, a tropical low was located 235 kilometres northwest of Weipa and was travelling in a northwest direction at 13 kilometres per hour. 

The tropical low is expected to become slow moving overnight and may reach tropical cyclone intensity over the northern Gulf of Carpentaria during Tuesday. Gales are not expected in coastal areas within the next 24 hours, however gales could develop later. 

Queensland Fire and Emergency Services (QFES) Regional Director for the Far Northern Region, Wayne Coutts, said residents still had a limited window of opportunity to ensure their homes and families were ready.

"Prepare your family by ensuring your emergency kit is well stocked with essential supplies including food, water, warm clothes, medications, first aid supplies, important documents, valuables and sleeping gear," Mr Coutts said.

"Keep up to date with the movement and severity of the Tropical Low by listening to your local radio and watching the BoM website."

With the tropical low expected to bring heavy rain to the region, Mr Coutts said residents affected by flooding should remember: 'If it's flooded, forget it'. 

"Think about the consequences of your actions and don't risk your life or the lives of your rescuers," he said.

"Under no circumstance should people enter flooded creeks or causeways by road or on foot. 

"Parents are also asked to keep a close eye on their children who may be tempted to explore the area and play in floodwaters. While this may appear fun, floodwaters are deadly and the dangers can be lurking beneath the surface."

Mr Coutts said there was a possibility of a storm surge associated with this weather event and members of the community should assess whether their building is able to withstand the conditions of a storm surge.

For storm and flood assistance contact the State Emergency Service (SES) on 132 500 and in a life threatening emergency call triple zero (000). 

For further information on how to prepare your home visit www.disaster.qld.gov.au and to keep updated on warnings monitor the BoM website at www.bom.gov.au.



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