Tropical systems and “winter”: location is everything…

Most NC residents are familiar with the Atlantic Hurricane Season, which runs from June through November. But the “peak” of tropical season varies globally based on location, along with the seasons. For residents of Australia, January and February can be very active. Cyclone Yasi slammed into the Australian coast in February of 2011 with estimated winds of 150+ mph. Damages totaled over $3 billion.

yasi

In January of 1918, Cyclone Mackay struck the northeastern Australia coast, killing at least 30 people in the process. Nearly all communication lines were destroyed, severely hampering the relief process.

makay

Probably the most famous of Australia’s tropical systems is Cyclone Tracy, which devastated the city of Darwin in 1974. The storm struck on Christmas Eve with winds over 120 mph. With damages of nearly $800 million and over 70 fatalities, Tracy ranks among the worst natural disasters in Australia’s history.

cyclone-tracy

(images courtesy of AP and State Library of Queensland)

jerry-jackson Chief Meteorologist Jerry Jackson

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