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Local News

Updated: Tourist dies in Cyclone Debbie storm zone

The two-car crash happened near Proserpine in the Whitsunday region.

By Lorna Gray
Update:
A 31-year-old female tourist has tragically died as a result of Cyclone Debbie. The fatal two-car crash occurred near Prosperine in the Whitsunday region.
Police confirmed a woman died at the scene, while a 16-year-old boy who was also in the car was taken to hospital.
Cyclone Debbie is expected to have more severe winds than Cyclone Yasi did in 2011.
Police are urging people to be cautious. Queensland Police Commissioner Ian Stewart gave the following warning: “People need to drive to the conditions and really think about whether they need to go outside at this point.”
The Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) has also issued a flood warning.
Stay safe everyone!
Earlier:
North Queensland residents are currently preparing against a monster cyclone, due to hit landfall on Tuesday morning, The Australian reports “thousands” are fleeing for higher land.
The Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) warned Cyclone Debbie is predicted to be category 4 or even 5 when it hits.
"I think you could say that Debbie's probably the most significant tropical cyclone since Yasi that we've had to deal with in Queensland," BOM Queensland regional director Bruce Gunn said.
Debbie is currently 400km east of Townsville and is expected to make landfall between Rollingstone and Proserpine.
Residents are being urged to secure their belongings and seek safe shelter by 10:00am today.
BOM's warning zone covers coastal communities from Lucinda to St Lawrence, including Townsville, Mackay, and the Whitsunday Islands. Schools between Ayr and Prosperine will also be closed.
Whitsunday mayor Andrew Willcox is urging residents to seek shelter with family or friends at higher ground.
“If you are unable to evacuate, the Cyclone Shelters in Bowen and Proserpine will be opened on Monday as a last resort,” he said.
Meanwhile Townsville Mayor Jenny Hill is urging residents to prepare for the worst.
"Over the next few days we have to keep monitoring it and we have to assume the worst, which is why we're asking people to prepare themselves now in case we require them to evacuate," she said.
The Brisbane Times reports up to 15 backpackers have ignored warnings and will upcontinue to head north.
Stay safe, everyone!
More as we get it.

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