Tropical Cyclone Watch issued for the Gulf of Carpentaria

The tropical low projected path as issued by the BoM at 5pm Thursday.
The tropical low projected path as issued by the BoM at 5pm Thursday.

The Bureau of Meteorology has issued a cyclone watch alert about a tropical low over the northeastern Gulf of Carpentaria which is expected to intensify and track south.

If it becomes a cyclone it will be named Cyclone Savannah and would be the fourth Gulf cyclone of the season after Cyclone NoraCyclone Owen and Cyclone Penny.

The Watch Zone as at 5pm Thursday covers the area from Mornington Island to Mapoon, including Weipa, Burketown, Normanton, Karumba and Kowanyama.

The tropical low has sustained winds near the centre of 35 kph with wind gusts to 85 kph.

It is currently located 135 kilometres northwest of Weipa and 550 kilometres north northeast of Mornington Island and is moving southwest at 9 kph.

The tropical low is expected to intensify into a tropical cyclone in the next day or two as it moves slowly to the south.

Gales are not expected to develop along the coast in the next 24 hours, but may develop between Mapoon and Gilbert River Mouth overnight Friday or Saturday morning and extend south to the remainder of the Watch zone later on Saturday.

Heavy rainfall, which may lead to both flash flooding and riverine flooding, is expected to develop across Cape York Peninsula and spread slowly southwards.

A Severe Weather Warning and Flood Watch are current over Cape York Peninsula, the eastern Gulf Country and the North Tropical Coast.

People between Mapoon and Mornington Island should consider what action they will need to take if the cyclone threat increases.