Published: Fri, February 22, 2019
Sci-tech | By Patricia Wade

Ute caught out as Tropical Cyclone Oma whips up big swell

Ute caught out as Tropical Cyclone Oma whips up big swell

Even if it doesn't smash the state with a direct hit, people are being warned to take extra care near water with huge swells nearly a certainty along with possible coastal erosion.

Gold Coast Lifeguards are preparing for a unsafe week on the Gold Coast, as Cyclone Oma starts thrashing the coastline.

MetService head of weather communications Lisa Murray said it was too early to be definitive about whether Tropical Cyclone Oma would hit.

"It's unfortunate, the timing of it all, but it's very risky when you get that king tide with large swells that hit the coast".

"We're forecasting very high tides anyway from today (Monday) onwards, they're getting up to the highest tides experienced in that part of the country", Mr Stoney said.

"It could bring damaging to destructive winds and the swell will be huge whether or not it hits the coast". The red area is 2 -6m high waves, the white area 9m waves. It may be windy and wet enough to prompt severe weather warnings in both islands, or it may push more offshore. It said swimmers should consider staying clear of the water and those rock fishing should avoid exposed coastal platforms.

The Weather Bureau has already put in place a hazardous surf warning for Gold Coast waters, with strong wind alerts likely on their way as well.

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On the Sunshine Coast, a ute ended up waging a battle with the swell - and losing.

The driver was forced to abandoned the truck to the elements.

The category two Cyclone Oma has been on the move for the last week and is now circling towards Vanuatu, but the effects of the strong winds and rough waters could be felt in Queensland.

"If you're visiting on the beaches and getting close to the foreshore, it becomes quite hazardous due to the strong tidal surges with the swell", Mr Maynard said.

"Warm moist air from the tropics will move over the upper North Island on Wednesday and produce some showers over parched areas of Northland, especially in eastern areas", states MetService Meteorologist Mark Bowe.

More as we get it.

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