149-mph cyclone could wallop Australia
Cyclone Yasi could set back Queensland, already damaged by recent flooding, shown here.
January 31st, 2011
11:20 AM ET

149-mph cyclone could wallop Australia

A strong cyclone thrashed flood-ravaged Queensland, Australia, this week, but another storm is about to hit the highly populated north coast - and it is much bigger.

Forecasters say Cyclone Yasi could reach 149 miles per hour, according to the Sydney Morning Herald. Many are concerned that Yasi could mean setbacks for the coal-mining sector of the region, which was socked by recent massive flooding, the paper reports.

Yasi is expected hit overnight Wednesday, according to The Australian, and will come ashore between Innisfail and Proserpine, directly hitting Queensland's capital, Townsville.

Yasi follows Cyclone Anthony, which hit this week with winds reaching 80 miles an hour, according to the Courier-Mail. The newspaper also had extensive coverage of the recent flooding, which affected 3 million people in one of the country's most costly disasters. Last week, Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard proposed a tax to help cover flood damage, estimated at $5.6 billion.

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Filed under: Australia • Weather
soundoff (176 Responses)
  1. wowlfie

    As if Australia didn't have enough water problems as it is.

    I'm sure down under they are tired of the old fable "when it rains, it pours'......

    Good luck mates!

    January 31, 2011 at 4:38 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Okay

    Well, Many people who commented will be "wishing" Townsville were the capital should the weather decide to follow CNN's mistake. We get it, Brisbane. 50 corrections should suffice. In other news: Turkey, the capital of England has declared bankruptcy, after President Gustav of China resigned as Prime Minister of India.

    January 31, 2011 at 4:44 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Knucklehead61

    149 mph....not 150....but 149.

    January 31, 2011 at 4:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • Brisvegas

      If it hits 150 it falls into a different Tax bracket.

      January 31, 2011 at 4:53 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Why149

    Why 149 and not 150 for such an imprecise estimate?
    Or why not 149.99 ?

    January 31, 2011 at 4:52 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tester

      My guess is that the Aussies estimated 240 kph and someone looked up the conversion factor and got 149.

      January 31, 2011 at 5:27 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Queenslander

    Is it REALLY that hard to check little facts like our state's capital?

    Come on CNN, you should be better than that.

    January 31, 2011 at 4:58 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Richard

    So, two years ago, the global warming hysterics were crowing that Australia was headed to desertification, now the country has had record rain and floods. A few years ago, they declared that "winter" was a thing of the past in England, and for the past two years, we've had record-breaking cold and snow. Never say die, global warmers...

    January 31, 2011 at 5:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • Joe

      Complex thought is something you're not capable of. Hard to explain to a moron what the effects of the planet heating up will be: some areas get hotter, some get colder, some get wetter, and weather gets more extreme. NOAA data says 2010 was, once again, the warmest year on record. A cold snap in one part of the world don't mean global warming isn't happening. But complex thought like that is well beyond your reasoning ability, sad indeed.

      January 31, 2011 at 7:09 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Mister Know Nothing

    The whole US 'left vs. right' has become pathetic. There is about as much difference between Republicans and Dems as there is between Pepsi and Cola, but you better pick one or be damned. I wish the US would start a full issues based democracy.

    January 31, 2011 at 5:03 pm | Report abuse |
  8. waterlily

    Brisbane is Queensland's capital city – not Townsville!

    January 31, 2011 at 5:05 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Tom

    Prayers to the beautiful country of Australia. Hope the impact is minimal. Friends from USA will be praying for Australia.

    January 31, 2011 at 5:09 pm | Report abuse |
  10. The1TheONLY

    Safe where I'm at for another 40 years, So I don't care about the earth’s convulsions. Even if I did it wouldn't make 1 bit of difference. Just as well sit back, crack a cold one, and not get to worked up about the inconvenience that man has helped make for himself. Here’s to all the fails that care about the failure. PSSST!!!

    January 31, 2011 at 5:15 pm | Report abuse |
  11. mehackney

    how come they call it a cyclone???though a cyclone was a tornado this sounds more like a typohoon or a hurricane are they the same things?

    January 31, 2011 at 5:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • Northern2011

      n the Southern Hemisphere Cyclones rotate in a clockwise direction while in the Northern Hemisphere Hurricanes rotate in a anti – clockwise direction. Cyclones and Hurricanes spin because the Earth is spinning. It's due to something called the coriolis effect.

      Hence why in the Northern Hemisphere they are called Hurricanes and in the Southern Hemisphere they are called Cyclones.

      January 31, 2011 at 6:02 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Northern2011

    Climate change. PFFFFT. We get a Cyclone season every year in Australia. It has been happening now for thousands of years. Nothing unusual here except for the size of the Cyclone. It is one big mother fukr.

    January 31, 2011 at 5:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • James

      @Northern 2011 – I think that's a slight understatement... It's gonna hit Qld quite hard when it does cross the coast (and maybe into NT and the far north of SA). If you're anywhere near that sucker – stay safe and get out of its way.. Good luck

      January 31, 2011 at 10:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • James

      Is the superbowl really a sporting contest? I thought it was a few hours of ads with soemeone chucking (not kicking) something that resembles a football around... 😉

      January 31, 2011 at 10:42 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Northern2011

    In the Southern Hemisphere Cyclones rotate in a clockwise direction while in the Northern Hemisphere Hurricanes rotate in a anti – clockwise direction. Cyclones and Hurricanes spin because the Earth is spinning. It's due to something called the coriolis effect.

    Hence why in the Northern Hemisphere they are called Hurricanes and in the Southern Hemisphere they are called Cyclones.

    January 31, 2011 at 5:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bill

      Wrong. Western Hemisphere=Hurricane Eastern Hemisphere=Cyclone Nothing to do with northern and Southern Hemisphere.

      January 31, 2011 at 6:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • Northern2011

      Yes, you are correct Bill. My mistake. Thanks for pointing the correct answer out. I guess being half asleep and typing comments doesn't mix so well.

      January 31, 2011 at 6:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • Brasil1958

      I think both Bill and Northern are correct because the equator plays a role. Atlantic hurricanes are north of the equator and pacific cyclones are south of it. Also are typhoon's a NORTHERN pacific feature? Just asking....also are there southern Atlantic Hurricane's or is water temp too cold? There is a stormy region between Brasil and Africa where the Air France A330 went down which is typically known for extremely bad weather.

      January 31, 2011 at 10:12 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Morgan

    Wow, I know it's been said before, but seriously, Townsville is the capital of Queensland? What a joke! For people who aren't from Australia – we get flooded all the time. I can't count how many times I have been stranded in caboolture or deception bay because of flood waters. This particular round is more devastating than most, but it must be put into the context that we have floods all the time – stop screaming apocolypse

    January 31, 2011 at 5:52 pm | Report abuse |
  15. dazza

    The capital of Queensland is not Townsville, IT IS Brisbane. If you are going to report world events please get to know your geography. How can a journalist reporting on world events get it so wrong??? It's like saying Odessa is the Capital of Texas not Austin Texas.

    January 31, 2011 at 5:54 pm | Report abuse |
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