Cyclone Debbie is closing in on the north Queensland coast. It is a category 4 tropical cyclone, but has come very close to being declared a category 5 – the highest category.
Tens of thousands of Queenslanders have been advised to evacuate their homes.
Forecasters are expecting wind gusts near the centre of up to 275 kilometres per hour. Very high tides are also expected, up to 2.5m above normal.
The government is urging people in coastal communities in the storms path to stay indoors and not risk their lives.
Because Cyclone Debbie is so large it could take up to 18 hours for the cyclone’s core to pass.