Fires, storms, Tropical Cyclone Owen impacting Qld

As firefighters continued to battle fires across the State, the Bureau of Meteorology predicted Tropical Cyclone Owen, which had formed off the Queensland coast, would intensify further before it weakened on Tuesday.

The Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) forecasted the system, which sat 1000km to the east of Cairns, was likely to reach category two later on Monday before it was expected to slow and turn westward. It would likely weaken on Tuesday.

The advice came as the State continued to suffer severe widespread fires and BOM warned severe storms would make their way to the area around Rockhampton, Gladstone, Bundaberg and Biloela on Monday as a south-easterly change and upper trough moved into Queensland.

RACQ spokesperson Lucinda Ross said the treacherous weather conditions were a timely reminder for Queenslanders to consider what needed to be done around the house and to put in place an emergency plan.

“People across Queensland are still being affected by these fires, and while Tropical Cyclone Owen is expected to weaken, we’re officially in storm season, so storms can develop at any time. Wherever you are, now’s the time to be ready for anything,” Ms Ross said.

“Take a good look around the outside of your home and remove debris, like branches and trees, clean your gutters and make sure your roof is secure and doesn’t leak.

“Plan ahead by pulling together your emergency kit with essential food, water and medical supplies, and have an emergency plan for your family and pets, in case you need to evacuate.

“Taking some time now to talk about your plan and prepare for a storm event is well worth the effort, because once the storm hits, it’s too late.”