Two major cyclones - Lam and Marcia - leave widespread damage as they move inland, Australia

Two major cyclones - Lam and Marcia - leave widespread damage as they move inland, Australia

Tropical Cyclone "Lam" crossed the mainland coast approximately 15 km (9.3 miles) east of Milingimbi, Northern Territory, Australia shortly after 16:30 UTC on February 19, 2015 as a 185 km/h (115 mph) Category 4 storm on the Australian tropical cyclone intensity scale.

Lam has now weakened to a tropical low and it continues to move in a SW direction over the central Top End. While winds have eased, the system is still producing widespread heavy rain.

At least six houses have been destroyed as it hit land. Water, telecommunications and electricity services have been cut to Galiwiniku residents on Elcho Island, which bore the brunt of the storm.

Power and water may be out for at least a week, authorities said.

At 07:10 UTC today, Ex-TC "Lam" was located about 75 km (46 miles) SW of Bulman and was moving SSW at 21 km/h (13 mph).

Thunderstorms and heavy rain which may lead to flash flooding are forecast for parts of the Daly, Tiwi, Gregory, western Arnhem and western Carpentaria forecast districts.

Locations that may be affected include Wurrumiyanga, Katherine, Katherine Airport, Daguragu, Delamere, Timber Creek, Victoria River Downs, Kakadu National Park, the Darwin area and Litchfield National Park.

Abnormally high tides which may cause sea water flooding of low lying areas are forecast for the eastern Arnhem and eastern Carpentaria forecast districts.

Locations that may be affected include Nhulunbuy, Angurugu, Gunyangara, Nhulunbuy Airport, Numbulwar and Ramingining.

221 mm (8.7 inches) of rain has fallen at Diljin Hill since 23:30 UTC on February 19 (by 07:10 UTC on February 20).

Ex-TC "Lam" forecast track issued at 06:18 UTC on February 20, 2015

Tropical Cyclone "Marcia"

Since crossing the coast near Shoalwater Bay, Queensland, Australia at 22:00 UTC on February 19 as a 203 km/h (126 miles) Category 5 storm, Tropical Cyclone "Marcia" has since weakened overland as it heads steadily southwards. 

At 08:00 UTC today, Marcia was a Category 2 storm with sustained winds near the center of 100 km/h (62 mph) and with wind gusts to 150 km/h (93 mph).

At the time, it was located 60 km (37 miles) SW of Gladstone and 35 km (21.7 miles) NE of Biloela.

The system continues to move south over the Capricornia district at 19 km/h (11.8 mph), while weakening. 

Tropical Cyclone "Marcia" forecast track issued 07:56 UTC on February 20, 2015

Gales with gusts to 120 km/h (74 mph) are expected about the coast and adjacent inland between Rockhampton and Double Island Point tonight, including Biloela, Monto, and Mundubbera.

Abnormally high tides will be experienced between Gladstone and Double Island Point with water levels expected to rise above the highest tide of the year on the high tide, even though the cyclone is inland. People living in areas likely to be affected by this flooding should take measures to protect their property as much as possible.

Dangerous surf is also expected.

Heavy rainfall is already occurring about coastal and adjacent inland areas between Gladstone and Double Island Point, and is expected to continue tonight and Saturday morning as the cyclone moves south. A Flood Watch is current for the area.

Marcia is expected to turn to the south-southeast this evening local time, and weaken below cyclone strength tonight (local time).

There are reports of widespread damage wrought by Marcia on the Capricorn coast around Yeppoon and Rockhampton with roofs uplifted, powerlines and trees blown down.

Ex-Tropical Cyclone "Lam" and Tropical Cyclone "Marcia" at 10:00 UTC on February 20, 2015. Image credit: WMS/SSEC - University of Wisconsin -Madison

Featured image: Tropical Cyclones "Lam" and "Marcia" at 10:24 UTC on February 20, 2015. Image credit: MeteoEarth. Annotation: The Watchers.

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