Source: Bureau of Meteorology

Issued at 5:41 am WST on Saturday 8 February 2020
Headline:

Severe Tropical Cyclone Damien is causing gales over the central Pilbara coast. Very Destructive winds, very heavy rainfall and a storm surge is expected as Damien crosses the coast near Dampier early this afternoon.
Areas Affected:
Warning Zone

De Gray to Onslow, including Port Hedland, Karratha, Dampier, Pannawonica and Barrow Island and extending to adjacent inland parts to include Tom Price and Paraburdoo.
Watch Zone

Inland central Pilbara including Newman and Mt Augustus.
Cancelled Zone

Pardoo to De Gray and inland to Marble Bar and Nullagine.
Details of Severe Tropical Cyclone Damien at 5:00 am AWST:

Intensity: Category 3, sustained winds near the centre of 150 kilometres per hour with wind gusts to 205 kilometres per hour.

Location: within 35 kilometres of 19.4 degrees South 116.5 degrees East, estimated to be 155 kilometres north northwest of Karratha and 240 kilometres west northwest of Port Hedland.

Movement: south southwest at 10 kilometres per hour.

Severe Tropical Cyclone Damien is expected to continue to intensify as it moves towards the Pilbara coast. Damien is likely to cross the coast between Whim Creek and Mardie early Saturday afternoon as a Category 4 system. Later on Saturday and Sunday, Damien will move inland and weaken.
Hazards:

GALES are occuring along the coastal fringe of the central Pilbara between Roebourne and Cape Preston and should extend to remaining areas along the Pilbara coast between Port Hedland and Mardie, inlcuding Karratha and Dampier this morning and may extend westward to Onslow and estwards to Port Hedland during mid to later morning. DESTRUCTIVE winds with wind gusts to 150 kilometres per hour are likely to develop between Roebourne and Cape Preston late Saturday morning as the cyclone approaches the coast.

VERY DESTRUCTIVE winds with gusts to 230 kilometres per hour are expected near the cyclone centre as it crosses the coast early Saturday afternoon.

Residents between Dampier and Port Hedland, including Dampier, Karratha and Port Hedland, are warned of the potential of a VERY DANGEROUS STORM TIDE as the cyclone centre crosses the coast. Tides are likely to rise significantly above the normal high tide mark with DAMAGING WAVES and VERY DANGEROUS FLOODING.

Heavy rain is likely to cause flooding in the Pilbara and Gascoyne as the cyclone moves inland over the weekend. Flood Watches and Warnings are current, please refer to http://www.bom.gov.au/wa/warnings/ for further details.
Recommended Action:

DFES advises of the following community alerts:

RED ALERT effective as of 0530hrs 8th Feb 2020: People in or near Whim Creek to Mardie and south to Millstream (including Whim Creek, Point Samson, Cossack, Wickham, Roebourne, Karratha and Dampier) need to go to shelter immediately.

YELLOW ALERT effective as of 0530hrs 8th Feb 2020: People in or near Port Hedland to north of Whim Creek and south to Wittenoom (including the Town of Port Hedland, north of Whim Creek, Barrow Island, Pannawonica) need to prepare for cyclonic weather and move to shelter.

BLUE ALERT effective as of 0530hrs 8th Feb 2020: People in or near Degrey to Port Hedland and Mardie to Onslow but not including Onslow (including Tom Price, Paraburdoo, De Grey) need to prepare for cyclonic weather and organise an emergency kit including first aid kit, torch, portable radio, spare batteries, food and water.

ALL CLEAR WITH CAUTION: Wallal Downs to De Grey including Nullagine and Marble Bar.

People needing SES assistance can call 132 500. In a life-threatening situation call 000. For more safety tips visit www.emergency.wa.gov.au

DFES advises that: Communities in the cyclone warning and watch zones should continue monitor advice issued as the cyclone approaches the Pilbara coast as changes to alerts and warnings may occur.

Current Tropical Cyclones