Environment

Tropical Cyclone “Hilda” hits Western Australia


Tropical Cyclone “Hilda,” the third named storm of the 2017/18 Australian region cyclone season, formed Wednesday, December 27, 2017, and hit Western Australia later that day with heavy rain and strong winds.

According to the Australian Bureau of Meteorology, Hilda was moving at 12 km/h (7.4 mph) almost parallel to the coast near Anna Plains and hit the Western Australia coastline overnight Friday, local time, with wind gusts reaching 120 km/h (74 mph). The cyclone has already dumped more than 150 mm (5.9 inches) of rain on the Dampier Peninsula north of Broome.

Image courtesy BOM

Tropical Cyclone Hilda December 27, 2017

Tropical Cyclone “Hilda” on December 27, 2017. Image credit: NASA Terra/MODIS

The storm brought winds up to 128 km/h (70 mph) to Broome and left up to 2 000 customers without power, as reported by the ABC. Several flights in and out of Broome were canceled and hundreds of oil and gas workers evacuated from rigs near the coast.

Hilda has since weakened into a tropical low. However, strong gusty winds and heavy rainfall are expected near the track in eastern Pilbara tonight and tomorrow.

At 06:00 UTC (14:00 AWST), the center of Ex-Tropical Cyclone “Hilda” was located 50 km (31 miles) east of Sandfire and 225 km (140 miles) NNW of Telfer. Its sustained winds near the center were 55 km/h (34 mph) with gusts to 85 km/h (53 mph) and the cyclone was moving S at 10 km/h (6.2 mph).

“Gales are no longer expected, however, heavy rainfall and squally thunderstorms with gusts to 100 km/h (62 mph) are possible over inland eastern Pilbara areas and adjacent Interior today and overnight as the system tracks to the south,” BOM said.

Ex-Cyclone Hilda BOM forecast track December 28, 2017

Image courtesy BOM

Featured image: Tropical Cyclone “Hilda” on December 27, 2017. Image credit: NASA Terra/MODIS





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