Ute caught out as Tropical Cyclone Oma whips up big swell

Cristina Cross
February 21, 2019

The jury remains out on if a storm will hit NZ, but based on both ECMWF and GFS this evening WeatherWatch.co.nz has a 40% confidence of some severe weather related to Oma, even if the storm itself doesn't directly come in to New Zealand.

Cyclone Oma, now affecting New Caledonia, is expected to head towards Queensland on it's south easterly path.

Gold Coast Lifeguards are preparing for a risky week on the Gold Coast, as Cyclone Oma starts thrashing the coastline.

Starting off in the south of the country, a frontal feature along with a warm and moist air mass pushes onto the lower South Island and brings rain with heavy falls reaching warning amounts from Monday through to Wednesday. Oma is likely to remain a strong Category 2 storm but the further south it tracks the less favourabole the conditions are for keeping it a tropical cyclone.

"We're advising people not to actually stand on the sand and get close to the waters edge".

"We'll constantly review the weather forecast over the next 48 hours and upon those reviews and weather forecasts, that's when we'll make a decision where it's safe enough to put the shark control equipment back out to sea", he said.

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"By the time we get to the weekend the winds will strengthen to 20 to 30km/h", she said.

It comes as the system continues its approach towards South-East Queensland, bringing large swells and winds over the coming days.

"Later in the week we are expecting high tides anyway, so any big swell coming in over the top of very high tides is going to create hazardous conditions".

TRACKING - Above, Fiji Met.

"The general expectation is that it will start to move in a south easterly direction towards New Zealand's north Island".

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