Alert as Australia braces for cyclone

2012-03-17 07:28
Sydney - A tropical cyclone bearing down on Western Australia intensified on Saturday, placing the region on high alert as the storm threatened to bring destructive gale-force winds.

Severe tropical cyclone Lua, upgraded to a Category 4 storm - five is the highest - is moving steadily toward the coast and is expected to make landfall on Saturday afternoon.

"There is a threat to lives and homes. You are in danger and need to act immediately," Western Australian emergency officials said in a warning to residents in the sparsely populated Pilbara region.

The small communities of Pardoo and Wallal are believed to be in the line of the cyclone and residents of those areas have been warned to seek shelter immediately.

"Destructive winds to 160km/h are possible between Port Hedland and Bidyadanga extending to the inland eastern Pilbara later in the day," the Bureau of Meteorology said in a warning.

"Very destructive winds up to 230km/h are forecast near the cyclone centre."

Commercial flights into the area have been cancelled and the main highway closed, while the Port Hedland port has been shut down.

Western Australia's Pilbara region is an important resources hub, with major iron ore and gas facilities.

Read more on:    australia  |  weather

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.