Severe Tropical Cyclone George - NW Australia

Oct 4, 2006
Brisbane, Australia
Hi all,

If anyone is still awake, there is a severe TC preparing to cross the north west coast of Australia.

STC George is sitting 120km N of Port Headland and is currently rated Category 4 with an estimated central pressure of 930hpa and maximum estimated wind gusts of 230km/h. <--- Here is a link to the track and threat map put out by the Australian Bureau of Meteorology. <--- and a link to a fairly impressive radar image (can loop up to 4 images) also from the Australian Bureau of Meteorology.

Hourly observations have been coming in from an island which sits 100km N of Port Headland (called Bedout Island). Its most recent data showed sustained 10 minute mean winds of 72knts and a pressure of 968hpa. The observations can be found here and show 72hrs of previous data....

Port Headland also has hourly data and it should be interesting to see how strong George can get with that last 120km's of warm ocean water to feed off. Here is the Port Headland link...

If you are quick (ie before it gets dark), there is a fairly impressive VIS sat pic image here...

The cyclone is expected to cross the coast in the vicinity of Port Headland late this evening (around 11:30pm AWST). High tide in the area is at 2:30am so if this cyclone continues to slow down (as it has over the past 4 hours), things could get quite serious for the residence of Port Headland and neighboring towns.


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The latest update is in and this storm is bordering on Category 5 now. Wind gusts of up to 275km/h have been recorded on Bedout Island (referred to in my aforementioned post) with sustained 10 min mean winds of 105knts (195km/h). The pressure reading didn't come from the most recent AWS (automatic weather station) update - i assume the instrumentation is taking a bit of a beating at the moment.

Central pressure now estimated to be 910hpa.

George intensified and got moving in a hurry.

Winds shifted from ESE to WNW right after the 7pm (WDT) 105 kt reading on Bedout Island. That converts to solid Cat 3 intensity on the SSHS (117 kt sustained 1-min winds).

Reports are just starting to filter in from the press in the last half hour:

[One] woman was killed and others were injured when winds up to 275kmh flattened a workers' camp of 30 transportable homes about 100 kilometres south of Port Hedland...SES Port Hedland manager Derek Jones said homes had been deroofed and fences and power lines had been brought down.​

Good timing with the last microwave image, which shows the landfall just east of Port Hedland and neighboring communities, so they were spared the strongest winds and highest surge:


Fri am update -- the latest forecast tracks for Jacob have it headed for the same area of Australia:

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[One] woman was killed and others were injured when winds up to 275kmh flattened a workers' camp of 30 transportable homes about 100 kilometres south of Port Hedland..

There is no excuse for this in 2007 ( or any uear in the past 20-30 ). Why the workers were not evacuated I have no idea.

I must admit that the lead up to George's landfall was rather subdued with very little media attention. The cyclone was also remarkable in that it held Cat 3 strength for a couple of hundred kilometres inland.