North Queensland is copping a beating from a “dangerous system” that could dump isolated falls of up to 250mm on Monday as ex-tropical cyclone Imogen moves east.
The system, which hit Karumba as a category 1 cyclone on Sunday night, weakened to a tropical low on Monday, but left hundreds of homes and businesses without power and closed roads in its wake.
Flash flooding and damaging wind warnings remain active for the Gulf Country, with the system set to hit the North Tropical Coast on Tuesday and extend into the Central Coast region by Wednesday.
The wild weather comes after heavy falls on Sunday in which Normanton Airport received 263mm in 24 hours, 186mm of which fell in just six hours.
Bureau of Meteorology forecaster Ricus Lombard said isolated falls of up to 250mm were forecast for Monday and Tuesday.
“A coastal trough will form around the north tropical coast which will see enhancing showers and storms from Cooktown to Townsville, which will extend to Mackay into the week,” he said.
“Lows are potentially uncertain, but for the next few days we’re pretty confident there will be higher rainfall totals.”
The bureau’s last warning at 10.45am on Monday said the tropical low had sustained winds near the centre of 55 kilometres per hour with gusts of up to 85 km/h.
The system was tracking east southeast at 14 km/h.
“Gales with wind gusts to 90 km/h have eased about the tropical low. However, damaging and locally destructive winds are still possible with thunderstorms in the area,” the warning said.
“Heavy rainfall that is likely to lead to flash flooding of low-lying areas and riverine flooding is being observed about the southeast Gulf of Carpentaria coast and adjacent inland and is likely to continue near the cyclone through Monday.
“Heavy rainfall will spread to inland areas of southern Cape York Peninsula on Monday as the cyclone moves further inland.”
Flood warnings are active for the Belyando, Paroo, Bulloo, Thomson, Diamantina, Georgina, Lower Flinders, Normal and Gilbert Rivers.