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19 févr. 2019 | 02h50 UTC

New Caledonia/Australia: Thousands without power from Cyclone Oma Feb. 19 /update 4

Australia Alerte de sécurité

Power outages due to Tropical Cyclone Oma affect 3000 on New Caledonia February 19; dangerous weather conditions expected to continue until February 20

TIMEFRAME expected from 19/2/2019, 12h00 until 24/2/2019, 11h59 (Pacific/Noumea). COUNTRY/REGION New Caledonia, Queensland

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Tropical Cyclone Oma continues to affect New Caledonia as of Tuesday, February 19, causing power outages for nearly 3000 people and resulting in flooded roads. Strong winds and heavy rain are expected to persist through Wednesday, February 20. As of 11:00 (local time) on Tuesday, the storm was producing sustained winds of 110 km/h (69 mph) with gusts up to 138 km/h (85 mph), a Category 2 cyclone and the equivalent of an Atlantic tropical storm. Total rainfall of 7.5-15 cm (3-6 in) and localized totals of 25 cm (10 in) is forecast for Grand Terre island. Flooding and wind damage resulting in power outages, infrastructure damage, and road closures is likely to continue throughout Tuesday and into Wednesday.

Oma is forecast to move south-southwest, toward Brisbane (Australia) until Friday, February 22, when it is set to curve eastward. Strong storm surge and high waves are expected to affect the coast of Queensland. Dangerous swells may be felt near Queensland's Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast, Fraser Island, and the southern shores of New Caledonia.


Cyclone season in the region typically lasts from November to April but storms can occur outside this period.


Individuals present in the abovementioned areas are advised to monitor local weather reports, refrain from oceangoing activity if conditions remain hazardous, and follow all instructions as issued by local authorities (e.g. evacuation orders). In the event of flooding, remember that driving or walking through running water can be dangerous - 15 cm (6 in) of running water is enough to knock over an adult - and that floodwater may contain wastewater or chemical products; all items having come into contact with the water should be disinfected and all foodstuffs discarded.


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