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article imageMonster cyclone Rusty hits Western Australia, nation

By Paul Wallis     Feb 26, 2013 in Environment
Sydney - A big category 4 cyclone is parked off Western Australia and it’s not budging. It’s moving extremely slowly and feeding rain and cloud all the way to Tasmania. Rusty is expected to dump more rain on the north west in 3 days than Perth gets all winter.
ABC Australia:
The Bureau of Meteorology's Neil Bennett has warned that the system is moving slowly but is expected to pack a punch.
"These are severe tropical cyclones. These are very, very powerful systems and even though many residents in the Pilbara have been through a number of tropical cyclones, they still bring with them an element of risk and they just can't be underestimated," he said.
Australia’s Top End is used to freakish weather. In 1975 Darwin was literally demolished by Cyclone Tracy. A few years ago, a Queensland cyclone broke up, skated across the country- And reformed off Western Australia.
This cyclone, however, is something new. The big dump of rain and feed from Rusty has intersected with a trough and Australia’s current synoptic chart literally has winds blowing in all directions.
There’s even a weird easterly blowing away from Western Australia, where the usual pattern is all about weather moving from west to east.
The Bureau of Meteorology tracking map shows how far Rusty hasn’t moved in four days. Usually, cyclones move a lot faster than that, and two days is the usual period for impact. Now a cyclone the size of France is taking its own sweet time, meaning the damage period is increased exponentially. This will also hamper the emergency services trying to manage critical incidents.
There’s also likely to be a major economic hit. This area used to be a real outback place, but now it’s full of miners and Port Hedland is quite a big place, handling shipping for the world’s biggest mining industry.
There’s not much information coming in from ground level, for obvious reasons. WA Today says that locals may have to be under cover for 36 hours, which is an awfully long time to stay pinned down in a cyclone, and very dangerous if there are any injuries to be treated.
More about Cyclone Rusty, Western australia, category 4 cyclone
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