Cyclone warning for Lancelin to Cape Cuvier coast and inland

Headshot of Geoff Vivian
Geoff VivianGeraldton Guardian
Email Geoff Vivian
DFES urges people to clean up their yards to prevent flying debris if cyclone Seroja hits.
Camera IconDFES urges people to clean up their yards to prevent flying debris if cyclone Seroja hits. Credit: Geoff Vivian/The Geraldton Guardian, Geoff Vivian

The Houtman Abrolhos islands are being evacuated ahead of Tropical Cyclone Seroja.

The Department of Fire and Emergency Services declared Evacuation Directions for the islands, effective from 6am Saturday.

An area stretching from just south of Coral Bay to Cape Cuvier and inland from Northampton to Coorow is on Blue Alert.

It extends inland to include the Shires of Northampton, Chapman Valley, Morawa, Greater Geraldton, Mingenew, Three Springs, Perenjori and the townsites of Mullewa, Coorow and Carnamah.

DFES district officer Todd Pender said it would be a “serious weather event”.

“The winds are going to be in excess of 150 km an hour and this is going to track across the coast between Kalbarri and Geraldton,” he said.

“It is fast moving, it is going to drop a lot of rain very quickly anything from 50 to 100ml of rain very quickly, within three to five hours.

“There will be flash flooding and due to the high tides there will be a small surge.”

The predicted track of Cyclone Serjoja issued at 8.56am.
Camera IconThe predicted track of Cyclone Serjoja issued at 8.56am. Credit: Supplied

Although there is no immediate danger DFES urges people in the warning area to begin preparing for the possibility of a severe cyclone.

Precautions include securing boats, caravans, trailers, garden sheds, outdoor furniture, rainwater tanks, LPG bottles, loose material and rubbish around the home and workplace.

Ensuring emergency and relocation kits are complete and the family knows what to do and checking with friends and neighbours to make sure they are preparing.

For anyone unfamiliar with the impacts of a cyclone, the safest option is to leave the warning area.

Holidaymakers and travellers should avoid this area, but if staying in accommodation it is important to ensure it is safe

Camping in a tent or caravan is not safe.

North West Coastal Highway may be closed over the weekend preventing travellers north of Minilya from driving south.

The only option then will be to travel further north, and face possible further restrictions on major highways in the coming days.

There were two active cyclones off the WA coast.
Camera IconThere were two active cyclones off the WA coast. Credit: Bureau of Meteorology/Supplied, Bureau of Meteorology

Travellers driving south need to have a plan as fuel may be in short supply and accommodation may not be available.

Weather conditions are expected to change rapidly near the west coast on Sunday as Seroja is forecast to accelerate to the southeast making landfall late Sunday or early Monday between Carnarvon and Jurien Bay.

If the Bureau of meteorology’s predictions are correct, Tropical Cyclone Seroja is turning left and heading for the coast where it is expected to cross just north of Geraldton late on Sunday or early on Monday.

WA is in the unusual position of having two active cyclones off the coast, however Tropical Cyclone Odette is expected to weaken to become a low pressure system before crossing the coast near Exmouth.

Get the latest news from thewest.com.au in your inbox.

Sign up for our emails