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Wet Week Predicted Thanks To Ex TC Penny

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Ex Tropical Cyclone Penny is heading back towards the Queensland coast. She is currently located around 600km east of Bowen and moving back towards the central coast, "so we will see an increase in rainfall along that stretch of the coast, we will probably see an increase in shower activity through today [Monday] but it's really Tuesday that we start to see some really heavy falls associated with the Ex Cyclone as it starts to come in" Bureau of Meteorology Forecaster Gordon Banks said.

Mr Banks added that he would expect to see the heaviest rainfall occur on the south side of the system, "and as we go through the week, we expect the remnants of Penny to be quite close to the coast tracking north and that's going to extend the heavy rainfall up through the Herbert and Lower Burdekin and by Wednesday, Thursday we'll see it around the North Tropical Coast and potentially some heavy rainfall and some realistic risk of some further flooding".

Cairns residents are being warned to brace for up to 80mm of rain to land in parts on Thursday, with a thunderstorm tipped to develop from Tuesday right through to the weekend. Mr Banks said there is a 25 per-cent chance we could see that 80mm mark reached. He said he couldn't rule out those storms turning severe. Any warnings will be posted on this website as they are issued.

In Cairns we are expected to see top temperatures of 33 degrees until Wednesday. In Townsville, the same maximum is tipped on Monday and Tuesday.

There will be some significant falls around Townsville but Mr Banks said "around Townsville there are less of the adjacent ranges that can help to generate some heavy rainfall". The biggest concern for the Bureau in this region will be on Wednesday and Thursday when there is an 80 per-cent chance of up to 30mm of rain falling in parts. Thunderstorms are predicted from Tuesday to Friday.

There is a Severe Weather Warning current for Alva Beach through to Sarina. In those locations, there is a possibility residents could experience six hourly rainfall totals in excess of 150mm through Tuesday. In Mackay we are expected to see a maximum temperature of 29 degrees on Monday and Tuesday and that will increase to 30 for much of the rest of the week.

Mr Banks said "we will see that severe weather move north during the week, so we can expect really significantly high short term rainfall totals that could lead initially to some flash flooding, but as the rainfall accumulates and the catchments become quite wet from the recent rain, that we could see more generally the rivers rising quite quickly so with that in mind we're also expecting a Floodwatch to be issued during today [Monday] really for those catchments...from Sarina all the way up to the sort of Port Douglas and Daintree, so it's going to be quite a wet week on the east coast".

On the southern Sunshine Coast, upwards of 30mm has fallen on Monday and there are showers around Rockhampton, Gladstone and Bundaberg and Hervey Bay. Mr Banks expects to see those isolated showers continue. There are no storms forecast in Bundaberg or Gladstone but there is a thunderstorm tipped to hit Rockhampton on Tuesday.

The good news is that the Fire Danger has been lowered along much of Queensland's coastline except in Townsville where it remains high.

By Michelle Price