Cyclone to stay offshore, prompting risky surf conditions

Cyclone to stay offshore, prompting risky surf conditions

The weather system is already bringing hazardous surf conditions and abnormally high tides.

A severe weather warning remains in place from the Fraser Coast to the NSW border.

"We are starting to see the main swell packet from Oma starting to arrive on the south coast of Queensland now", Hall told the ABC.

Beachgoers in northern NSW have been warned of risky surf and wind conditions as a cyclone tracks off the Queensland coast.

Damaging wind gusts of more than 90km/h were expected on Saturday afternoon and night in exposed areas of the coast and islands between the Sunshine Coast and the New South Wales border.

Weather prediction models now suggest Oma will be 300km off the Sunshine Coast on Saturday, but for how long, and where it goes next is anyone's guess.

Beaches from Tweed Heads to Port Macquarie have been closed and are expected to remain closed until early next week.

BIG SEAS EXPECTED: Yeppoon is now experiencing high tides and submerged roads with big swells still coming.

But residents in Queensland should not be too concerned, as the cyclone is not likely to cross the coast or make landfall. "Beach erosion is likely to continue with the hazardous marine conditions".

A FLOOD watch warning is now in place for the Mary and Burrum rivers.

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Significant erosion to the coastline is being forecast.

It is unusual, but not unprecedented, for cyclones to track as far south as Oma could eventually go.

The longer it stays offshore, the greater the potential damage to beaches as waves of up to six metres pound the shoreline, he said.

Inland areas which are drought stricken may benefit from the rain Oma brings with itself.

But if you're thinking about hitting the beach for a swim, you may want to think otherwise as it could be a criminal offence.

"Two and a half, three days ago a lot of our computer models were suggesting that it was going to get quite close to the coast or even cross the coast, which would have been a pretty bad scenario for us in southern Queensland, but we have steadily moved away from that". "It would end up decaying and dropping rainfall in those dry areas".

"At the moment Cyclone Oma is moving south-west towards and we have a warning for risky surf today and tomorrow and over the weekend as well".

Authorities are warning people not to panic but prepare because the system is expected to bring gale force winds and heavy rainfall.

"Tuesday could possible be heavier with falls up to 20mm, but that's depending on what the cyclone does".

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