Cyclones potential off Queensland as state cops deluge of rain

Heavy rain has caused flash flooding in parts of north-west Queensland. Courtesy: 9NEWS

Queensland towns recovering from last week’s floods could receive another 300mm of rain, with meteorologists now warning there is the possibility of cyclones forming in the Gulf of Carpentaria and Coral Sea. 

The weather bureau’s computer models predict a five to 20 percent chance of a cyclone brewing over the area later this week.

As a low-pressure system, currently bringing a deluge of rain to north-western Queensland, moves north over water, it increases the chance of a cyclone developing, BoM said.  

The heavy rain should continue over north and west Queensland for the next few days, hopefully easing by Saturday, Weatherzone meteorologist Thomas Hough said.

In the past 24 hours, 127mm of rain was recorded at Julia Creek, about 650 west of Townsville.

Winton, 177 north-west of Longreach, recorded its wettest day in 18 years with 101.8mm of rainfall. 

Thargomindah received 22mm, in its wettest day since October, and Ballera received 20mm. 

The north-west Queensland towns of Cannington and Phosphate Hill have already received their greatest monthly rainfall totals in 14 and 16 years respectively, recording 214mm and 137.4mm. 

Up to 300mm of rain could fall in some regions between today and midnight Saturday, Weatherzone said.

Meanwhile, The Burdekin, Charters Towers, Etheridge, Palm Island Aboriginal Shire and Townsville local government areas will be eligible for state and federal government funds after flash flooding swept through the region.

Queensland Emergency Services Craig Crawford said crews were continuing to assess the damage, with more rain predicted in the coming days after falls of about 500mm in some places late last week.

Expected accumulated rainfall totals from today to Saturday:

– Gulf Country: 100-200mm possibly upwards of 300mm localised (most likely north)

– North West: 100-200mm possibly upwards of 250mm localised, widespread 40-80mm 

– Channel Country: 100-150mm, possibly up to 200mm localised, widespread 30-80mm

– Northern Goldfields:100-150mm, possibly up to 200mm localized, widespread 30-80mm

– Central West: 50-100mm, possibly up to 150mm localised, widespread 20-60mm

– North Tropical Coast/Herbert and Lower/Burdekin: 150-250mm along the coast, possibly up to 300mm, 20-60mm further inland.