Violent cyclone expected in Queensland

Thousands of Australians evacuated their homes on Monday as a powerful cyclone approaches Queensland’s coastal cities with winds that could reach 300 km/h.

Hurricane Debbie reached Category 4, on a scale of no more than 5, before landing on the lands of the northeastern state on Tuesday early in the day, according to Australian weather forecasts.

This is the most violent hurricane to hit the country since Hurricane Yasi in 2011, said Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk.

Near Townsville, 3,500 residents of near-sea-level neighborhoods evacuated the area, and authorities have recommended more than 2,000 other residents of Bowen to leave, Palaszczuk said.

It will be a dangerous cyclone. The squalls are going to be absolutely terrible.

Annastacia Palaszczuk, Premier of Queensland

The Abbot Point Coal Terminal and the Mackay and Hay Point Harbors are closed until further notice.

The activity was suspended at the South Walker Creek coal mine, just south of the forecast hurricane path, announces mining group BHP Billiton. The Glencore group has said that the coal mines of Collinsville and Newlands are suspended.

Townsville airfield was shut down and Qantas, Jetstar, Rex and Virgin Australia announced that they were canceling several flights with the affected area on Monday and Tuesday.

Queensland produces 95% of Australia’s bananas and, although Debbie must avoid the most important production areas in the far north of the state, torrential rains and high winds can inflict severe crop damage. , predict the specialists.