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Northeastern Australia prepares for ‘destructive’ cyclone

CAIRNS (AFP) – The northeastern Australian cities of Cairns and Port Douglas are readying for the arrival of Tropical Cyclone Jasper, which is forecast to bring destructive winds and potential flooding.

The Category One storm has been slowly churning across the Coral Sea, with the core of the cyclone expected to hit Australia’s eastern coast.

The tourist cities of Cairns and Port Douglas – both gateways to the Great Barrier Reef – are in the path of the storm. Meteorologists have forecast it will strengthen to a Category Two storm, bringing winds of 140 kilometres per hour, heavy rain and possible storm tides. Miriam Bradbury of Australia’s state Bureau of Meteorology said there was a possibility of destructive gusts.

“Winds of this strength can easily bring down tree limbs, whole trees or power lines,” she warned.

Authorities are warning of damage to fences, roofs and other property – urging residents to tie down loose items before the storm arrives.

PHOTO: ENVATO
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