Cyclone Owen approaches coast

Cyclone Owen Category 4


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The latest forecast path of Owen.

The latest forecast path of Owen.

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Cyclone Owen could hit the Queensland coast as a Category 4 system.

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CYCLONE Owen is expected to pack a punch with wind gusts over 200km/h as it intensifies and crosses the Queensland coast as a severe storm.

Owen reintensified today to become a severe Category 3 cyclone, and is expected to strengthen to a Category 4 before it makes landfall between Kowanyama and the Gilbert River Mouth late tomorrow or early Saturday.

The Bureau of Meteorology warns its’ impacts remain slightly unpredictable and residents should prepare for any scenario.

BOM meteorologist Lauren Pattie said Owen cross as a severe cyclone packing severe wind gusts over 164km/h and delivering heavy rainfall.

“Potentially it will still be a Category 4 though as it approaches and crosses the coast we expect it to rapidly weaken, though there will be still significant wind, heavy rainfall and storms.”

A Category 4 storm can deliver wing gusts in excess of 230km/h, with winds at the centre measuring around 165km/h.

Ms Pattie said the most rain was currently occurring on the NT coast, and overland and Mornington Island as it made a U-turn toward Queensland.

She said falls in excess of 200mm were likely.

Once Owen crosses, late tomorrow or early Saturday, areas inland to Georgetown could also experience the impacts.

It is expected to hug the Queensland coast slightly inland as it becomes a low pressure system, bring significant rain to coastal areas from Cairns to Townsville and perhaps as far south as Mackay.

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