News State QLD News Storm surge hits north Queensland
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Storm surge hits north Queensland

Townsville
ABC
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A storm surge has begun to inundate some coastal areas as a huge tropical storm barrels towards north Queensland.

A cyclone warning is current for every town and city between Cardwell and St Lawrence, with the storm currently about 360km northeast of Townsville and moving southwest.

But a cyclone warning for communities between Cairns and Cardwell has been cancelled.

The Bureau of Meteorology says the storm is packing winds up to 120km/h and is likely to develop into a category one cyclone on Thursday afternoon before it makes landfall somewhere between Lucinda and Proserpine on Friday.

A dangerous storm surge is expected to coincide with a king tide on Thursday and Friday, but forecaster Matt Bass says seawater has started to swamp some coastal areas.

“Already we are seeing some low-level inundation over coastal areas, and as the low intensifies and moves towards the coast, particularly on the high tide this morning and tomorrow morning, we could see more further low-level inundation with seawater,” he told ABC Radio.

It’s moving at 12km/h towards the coast and is expected to track southeast before “crossing the Queensland coast between Lucinda and Prosperine on Friday morning”.

Townsville and towns between Lucinda and Mackay have been warned of possible damaging waves and flooding of low-lying areas.

Hamilton Island and some coastal communities also recorded winds of 120km/h overnight.

Heavy rain, which may lead to flash flooding, is also expected about coastal and inland areas of the North Tropical Coast, the Tablelands, Herbert, Lower Burdekin, Central Coast and Whitsundays districts on Thursday.

Townsville council is opening open three evacuation centres this morning as locals brace for the bad weather.

The state’s Fire and Emergency Services is urging people living in the zones to prepare their properties and listen to advice from authorities.

A storm tide is forecast between Cardwell and Lucinda and also between Mackay and St Lawrence, BoM warns, with “damaging waves and flooding of some low-lying areas close to the shoreline”.

Townsville council is opening open three evacuation centres this morning as locals brace for the bad weather.

The state’s Fire and Emergency Services is urging people living in the zones to prepare their properties and listen to advice from authorities.