Cyclone off Queensland coast set to weaken

Laine Clark |

Tropical Cyclone Seth is set to “make life difficult” for Queensland’s southeast with “abnormally” high tides, strong winds and huge swells expected to hit this weekend.

But the Bureau of Meteorology does not expect the category-two cyclone to intensify, saying it is set to become a tropical low by the time it starts moving closer to the coast on Monday.

“At this stage we are not expecting it to cross the coastline,” BOM meteorologist Helen Reid told AAP.

“It will make life difficult for the coastline, definitely, but it is likely to weaken and not be classed as a tropical cyclone by the time we get to late Monday.

“Indications are that it will only be a tropical cyclone for another day or two – if it crosses the coast it will not be a tropical cyclone.”

BOM still issued strong wind, severe weather and hazardous surf warnings on Saturday for the state’s southeast as Tropical Cyclone Seth moved down the Coral Sea after forming 495km northeast of Mackay.

“With the wind, surf and warnings for abnormally high tides, there is plenty going on without it hitting the coast,” Ms Reid said.

A strong wind warning is current for Bowen in the Whitsunday Region, with gales expected to impact down to Sunshine Coast Waters by Sunday after gusts of more than 100km/h were recorded off the coast on Friday night.

BOM has also issued a severe weather warning from Wide Bay to the southeast coast with high tides expected to reach an “astronomical peak” over the next few days, easing on Wednesday.

Areas that may be affected include Gold Coast, Maroochydore, Coolangatta, Moreton Island, Noosa Heads, Caloundra, North Stradbroke Island, Rainbow Beach and Redcliffe.

A hazardous surf warning is current between Sandy Cape and Cape Morton, extending south to Point Danger on Sunday with waves of up to four metres.