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''It's Huge and Lethal - Get Out Now''
2.04pm Update from Premier Anna Bligh, standing once again in front of a screen showing the unsettling radar image of Yasi moving towards the coast on a loop.
Cairns hospital is being evacuated. Bligh says the record needs to be checked but it would appear this is the first time that a big regional hospital in Queensland has been entirely evacuated.
Some airports may close as early as this evening.
Emergency authorities are pleased that a large number of people have decided to self-evacuate. Police are asking people who are travelling southbound to be "very patient, and very careful" to avoid officers having to deal with road incidents or "road squabbles" as heavy traffic moves out of the area.
1.43pm It's mayhem in parts of north Queensland. The ABC reports on some of the mass evacuations underway, while some residents who have witnessed some of the region's biggest cyclones say they are more nervous about this one than any before. Excerpt:
Keep upto date with: News.com.au
Streaming Traffic Cameras - Cairns
Australia evacuates coastal cities in path of cyclone
Australia evacuated northeast coastal cities on Tuesday as a cyclone rivalling the strength of Hurricane Katrina bore down on tourism, sugar and coal mining areas and threatened areas already devastated by floods far inland.
Cyclone Yasi is expected to generate winds of up to 280 kph (175 mph) when it hits the Queensland state coast early on Thursday (2pm Wednesday, GMT), matching the strength of Katrina, which devastated New Orleans in 2005.
With a strong monsoon feeding Yasi's 650 km-wide front, the storm was also expected to maintain its intensity long after crossing the coast and could sweep inland as far as the outback mining city of Mt Isa
Originally posted by redgy
best to just get well away from the area's in question.
The cheapest Qantas flight from Cairns to Sydney today is $1,131 for a non-direct flight.
Travel agents say demand for flights out of Mackay have tripled the cost of a one-way ticket from Mackay to Brisbane.
"People have the perception that the airlines just hike the prices up because of the situation but it's not that," she said.
Originally posted by Havick007
reply to post by NuclearPaul
Exactly, great point!
Why should higher demand increase prices, if anything it should be the opposite.
Issued at 1:59 pm EST Tuesday 1 February 2011. Refer to Tropical Cyclone Advice No: 6
YASI IS A LARGE AND POWERFUL TROPICAL CYCLONE AND POSES A SERIOUS THREAT TO NORTH QUEENSLAND COMMUNITIES
The cyclone is expected to slowly intensify overnight as it moves westwards over the Coral Sea.
SEVERE TROPICAL CYCLONE YASI, CATEGORY 3 is expected to turn on a more west-southwesterly direction in the next 12 hours.
DAMAGING winds with gusts to 90 km/hr are expected to develop on the islands during Wednesday morning, then extend onto the coast during the day, and further inland across southern Cape York Peninsula and north of Charters Towers overnight.
- For cyclone preparedness and safety advice, visit Queensland's Disaster Management Services website (www.disaster.qld.gov.au)
- For emergency assistance call the Queensland State Emergency Service (SES) on 132 500 (for assistance with storm damage, rising flood water, fallen trees on buildings or roof damage).
More Information BOM
Northern Queensland Coastal Waters Forecast
Please be aware
Wind gusts can be 40 percent stronger than the averages given here, and maximum waves may be up to twice the height
Warning Summary at issue time
Wind warnings have been issued for Severe Tropical Cyclone Yasi for waters south of Cape Melville.
For the latest warning information please check the Bureau's web site www.bom.gov.au/qld
Severe Tropical Cyclone Yasi lies in the northeast Coral Sea and is expected to move west-southwest towards the Queensland tropics and intensify, crossing the northeast tropical coast Wednesday night or early Thursday morning. Refer to latest Tropical Cyclone warnings. A high over the Tasman Sea extends a weak ridge along the southeast Queensland coast.
Townsville Emergency Alert Notification 1330 hrs Feb 01 ---
The Townsville Mayor advises that your home may be in a storm surge zone. Evacuation to a friend or family away from coastal areas is advised as soon as possible TODAY.
More information can be found at www.townsville.qld.gov.au or local media.
For assistance from the State Emergency Service call 132 500, for emergencies call triple zero (000).
''Yasi will be worse than Larry'' - Bligh
Thousands of north Queenslanders are being evacuated as severe tropical cyclone Yasi bears down with greater ferocity than devastating Cyclone Larry.
Forecasters say communities between Cooktown and Townsville are most at risk of a direct hit from Yasi, expected to cross the coast sometime late on Wednesday night or early Thursday morning as a severe category four storm with winds of more than 250km/h.
Premier Anna Bligh, who met with the state disaster management group on Tuesday morning, said the storm would be worse than Cyclone Larry, which damaged 10,000 homes and caused $1.5 billion in damage around Innisfail in 2006.
Cairns hospital evacuates ahead of Yasi - Tuesday, February 01, 2011 » 02:26pm
Authorities will evacuate two north Queensland hospitals as Cyclone Yasi approaches, with the air force to take patients to hospitals in safe areas.
Premier Anna Bligh said 250 patients from the waterfront Cairns Base and Cairns Private hospitals would begin leaving on Tuesday evening.
The air force will take patients to Brisbane hospitals, which had been placed on a 'code brown' alert, meaning some elective surgery would be cancelled to make room.
Tourists flee north Queensland - Tuesday, February 01, 2011 » 02:31pm
Hundreds of tourists are deserting Queensland with airlines arranging extra flights for people scrapping their holidays due to Cyclone Yasi.
Jetstar on Tuesday put on two additional flights from Hamilton Island and two from Cairns to help people escape the ferocious category four cyclone, expected to cross the coast near Cairns around 1am (AEST) on Thursday.
Spokesman Simon Westaway said both Hamilton Island flights were full, with 350 passengers to arrive in Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne later on Tuesday.
3.54pm University campuses and schools in Far North Queensland have been closed for the rest of the week.
3.23pm The Bureau of Meteorology has released an updated tracking map of cyclone Yasi. The graph shows the centre of the storm hitting Cairns as a Category three just before 1am (AEST) on Thursday morning, and reaching inland Croydon 12 hours later as a Category one
Originally posted by Havick007
reply to post by munkey66
Yeah i think the automated warning services have been more prominent in the past 1-2 years, dont ignore them though, it's better safe than sorry.
Next you will be getting TXT msgs as well...
I guess if it were me, id rather leave and be safe than stay and be stuck in the middle of a castrophe. If nothing happens or it's not as bad as they say, then it may have been a waste of time evacuating but it's better than than the alternative.
If it is as bad as they say then the outcome could be very bad....
I was watching footage of the storms that hit the other day and they had been downgraded to tropical storms and they still caused alot of damage, you probably know more than me about all that. So if this one hits and is a Cat 4.... it's gonna be powerfull, Reuters was comparing it to hurricane Katrina!
Other outlets have been saying places as far inland as Mt Isa are gonna feel the effects of it, although not as bad as the coast...
From Cairns, airlines are waiving their usual fees for changes to non-refundable itineraries for flights. Australian Business Traveller has contacted all major airlines flying from Cairns to confirm the details of their policy, and will list them on this page as we receive details.
Originally posted by Havick007
reply to post by prolific
Yeah better safe than sorry. We saw this with the flooding last month, some people chose to stay at their house / property and were then stranded.
The same happened in 2009 with ferocious bushfires that hit parts of Victoria, Aus. People chose to stay at their homes but the fires were so intence..... the worst ever seen and they became victims