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Autumn blast: leading forecaster predicts strong winds, big seas and a late flood


It’s usually mild, but this autumn will be wild and Australia’s most respected long-range forecaster has revealed why.

Hayden Walker, a fourth-generation forecaster and son of world-famous weather expert Lennox Walker, has prepared an exclusive analysis for Sunshine Coast News.

He is forecasting power-packed winds, large seas in April and a deluge leading to flooding in late May.

“Two low pressure systems positioned in the Pacific Islands in April, and a cyclone near the Solomons in May, will instigate strong winds that will create wilder than usual conditions along the Queensland coast,” Mr Walker said.

He said that strong south-easterly winds were indicated for the Sunshine Coast for the remainder of March, with scattered storms to continue.

Mr Walker said April rainfall would be typical ‘April showers’, but there would be more action in the ocean with the possibility of erosion along the coastline.

“The Queensland coastline can expect strong winds and powerful swell from a low pressure system in the Pacific islands.

Low pressure systems will drive more big seas our way in coming months. Picture: Peter Hall

During the second week of April, we will see storm activity in South-East Queensland with rain.” Mr Walker said gale force winds – and more high seas – would be prominent during the latter half of April due to another low near New Caledonia.

“Isolated Thunderstorms are indicated for the Central Inland, South-East, Darling Downs and Port Curtis during the month. Mainly at the end of the month for the South-East,” he said.

“Rainfall during May will be heavy in the South-East and Far North Coast during the first half of the month. Adjoining areas to the South-East, including border areas, will also be affected with flooding.

“Easterly winds are also indicated for the coastal regions during the month and will also be affected by a cyclone in the Solomons, generating strong to gale force winds.

Liana,5, looks at flooded Petrie Creek at Nambour. More rain is due in late May. Picture: Warren Lynam

“Towards the end of the month a cold front will pass through creating frosts to the Southern and Central Inland areas.

Thunderstorms are indicated to the South-East and Southern Interior during the first half May.

Elsewhere in the nation, Mr Walker predicts May will bring heavy falls to the eastern half of NSW.

“Most of Victoria, southern parts of SA and WA, and most of Tasmania will see heavy falls and there will be a late cyclone in the Northern Territory during the first half of April,” he said.

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