Trees at Bowen's Skate Park took a battering during Cyclone Debbie.
Trees at Bowen's Skate Park took a battering during Cyclone Debbie.

Outlook: What cyclone season has in store

FEWER Cyclones are expected to threaten the Australian coastline this season, according to the Bureau of Meteorology.

BOM has launched its Tropical Cyclone Outlook, which predicts Queensland could see a "below average" cyclone season due to the influence of a possible El Niño in the Pacific Ocean.

Australia typically sees 10 to 13 tropical cyclones form each season in the region, four of which cross the coast.

While the influence of El Niño typically reduces the number of coastal crossings, at least one tropical cyclone has crossed the Australian coast each season since reliable records began in the 1970s, according to BOM.

BOM State Manager Bruce Gunn said fewer cyclones were expected.

"The Tropical Cyclone Outlook released today, points to an average to slightly below average season due to the influence of a possible El Niño in the Pacific Ocean, which generally brings warmer and drier conditions to Queensland," he said.

On average one in four cyclones in the Coral Sea crossed the coast, but it only took one to devastate the state as was the case when Tropical Cyclone Debbie battered parts of Queensland last year, he said.

Cyclone season usually runs from November to April, although one early season cyclone has already occurred in the southern hemisphere with Cyclone Liua, the first on record in the Fijian region in September.


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