Sunday 24 January 2010

Cooktown fine, Cape Tribulation gets the brunt of Olga

Cooktown has missed any sign of a cyclone says owner of the town's main hostel and motel.

"It's not even raining up here," Scott Orchard told CairnsBlog. "The cyclone's not even coming this way.

Cyclone Olga made a South Easterly change late morning, and tracked south towards Cape Tribulation. At 2pm this afternoon, it was around 15 kms off the coast, and had been downgraded to a category 1 system.

"It's only been a bit of drizzling rain and no wind at all," said Scott Orchard, who spent the last 24 hours with the help of his 25 international guests, moving furniture and tying things down, in preparation.

"It was coming direct towards Cooktown, but it's now heading south of us," Orchard says. ""In a straight line, Port Douglas is only 90 kilometers from Cooktown."

"I was sitting down listening to the radio this afternoon on Rebel FM and they were saying that it was crossing the coast at Cooktown now," Orchard said. "I don't know where they get there information from. I was sitting outside lighting a cigarette."

"I got the camera ready, and was hoping for a category 5," Scott Orchard said, who has lived thorough a number of sever weather events in the historic coastal town. "I wish it would have come though and blown a few of the 'for sale' signs away."

Orchard says that there is still a lot of properties on the market in Cooktown.

The BOM update at 1:55pm is...

  • GALES are expected about the coast between Cooktown and Cairns and adjacent inland areas during the afternoon.

    Very heavy rainfall with localised flooding is expected to develop about the North Tropical Coast.

    Abnormally high tides are expected between Cooktown and Cairns, but the sea level should not exceed the highest tide of the year. Large waves are likely along the beachfront.

    People between Cooktown and Cairns should remain inside until the cyclone has passed and listen to the next advice at 5pm.


Vyv Wong (via Facebook) said...

Just glad I'm not there!!!

Mark Beath said...

Was it just my paranoia .... or were the BOM updates on Olga somewhat deficient today at critical periods?

OK it was a bit of a powderpuff but as it approached the coast there was no update for a few hours and the promised “next update by 2pm” came at exactly 2.01pm as it was actually hitting the coast at Cape Trib? Nice timing!

Perhaps the less populated areas up the coast and around Cooktown are more expendable but I think I recall being able to track Larry online at short regular intervals all the way to the coast?

Do they really want us to take the next one seriously?

Maybe they were all away for the weekend at BOM?

Ross Parisi said...

What we witnessed today from the Bureau of Meteorology was a salient example of what happens when things are centralised in Brisbane.

"Cyclone Olga" was classified as a Category 1. I am no weather guru but Olga was no/never was a cyclone. Strictly speaking it generated wind gusts of 87 km/hr at Low Isle, 85km/hr at Green Island and 63 km/hr at the Cairns Airport.

I was following its path via the BOM Radar pictures and it was obvious that at about 1.00pm it changed course and instead of heading as forecasted, for Cooktown it took an abrupt left hand turn and headed for Cooya Beach, halfway between Low Isle and Port Douglas.

Perhaps one of the reason why it changed course so rapidly was that its structure became diorganised and no longer was a cyclone, but rather a loose area of lower barometric pressure.

What concerns me is that all Cyclone announcement come from far removed Brisbane and not from the Cairns Bureau.

Furthermore, with the cut backs in Federal Government funding to the Local Weather Bureau located at the Cairns Airport, this example of poor surveillance, forecasting and notification is going to, if anything get worse.

Sadly, while these cut backs are being made, not a single critical disenting word from our local Labor Politicans, both Federal and State.

This of course is what happens when you have a monopoly of representation. The consequence, poor Governance.

Miss Chief. said...

Well I don't know about Cape Trib etc... XTC Olga decided to thumb her, not to tiny nose, at BOM and do a little dance along the coast instead! She decided that somewhere between Gordonvale and Innisfail was more to her liking. It was a rather sticky night with the power out from about 3am. I must say it was a pretty spectacular sound and light show though! I love watching electrical storms in this part of the World.
Apparently she's been tooling around the Tablelands and is now going to spend today in the Gulf Country in the Croydon area. Who knows where she will decide to spend Australia Day. BOM says to expect her to strengthen. They've probably got that right!

Tony Hillier said...

The way the mainstream media beats the great unwashed into a frenzy about cyclones — and I'm not just talking about the Compost here — is a disgrace. It's mostly designed to fuel commerce. Cairns Blog doesn't have to jump on the bandwagon. It's just customary wet season weather, Michael — small fry to what it was in the '80s, when the monsoon troughs were really active.

Anna Ligh said...

I think everyone in Queensland should appreciate my contribution and most particularly what was achieved by the media response to my forecst of 300mm of rain!

Well, no, as you ask I have no meterological qualifications and also, no, there are no rain forecasts from BOM to verify my spurious predictions but hey there wasn't much else to say to get me some news and look like I was on the ball and unlikely to be any blowback!

Anna Blight said...

I know especially today, I will be the butt of many a joke about my perception and how I dont know what I am doing and people are putting reverse spin, yes spin on my claim of Smart State into 'SMART STATE.. DUMB GOVERNMENT"

But I tell you what, I will be in power for as long as strong man Ludwig and his right wing AWU hench men want me to.

I am aware that the ALP have form when it comes to installing women as Premier to a moribund Government. Remember, Kirner, Mc Nalley, Lawrence. They did not expect me to win the last election but Springbug shot himself in the foot as usual. Wow..gee I was lucky..phew!

Unlike Roman Emperors that built up their Empire, I want to be remembered for my Botox puffed up face and for selling off the family silver that was acquired so judically by Sir Joh.

My ego tells me that like those Roman Emperors, I need to be remembered for something, so I have decided to sell, sell, sell!!!

...and the Queensland people, well they can get!!!