** UPDATE 29/3**
Some airports have reopened after Cyclone Debbie lashed the north Queensland coast yesterday, hitting Hamilton Island, Airlie Beach, Bowen and Mackay the hardest.
Townsville and Gladstone airports are operating some flights; Mackay airport has cancelled most flights today; and Hamilton Island and Proserpine airports remain closed.
While the clean-up has begun, some areas are still enduring heavy rain and strong winds, with a risk of flooding as Debbie – now a tropical low – moves inland. Heavy rain is expected in Brisbane tomorrow and Friday.
Travellers should avoid areas of damage and fallen power lines, stay away from beaches, rivers and flooded areas, and follow the instructions of local authorities.
Cyclone Debbie is approaching the north Queensland coast and is expected to make landfall tomorrow between 7am and 9am.
Most flights in and out of the region – including Hamilton Island, Mackay, Proserpine and Townsville – have been suspended, and resorts and hotels are making arrangements for guests.
The Category 2 storm is predicted to intensify to a Category 4 cyclone when it crosses the coast, bringing winds between 160 and 200 kilometres an hour, with gusts up to 280 kilometres an hour. The Whitsundays is already experiencing strong winds and a king tide is expected in Proserpine today.
People have been advised to stay away from the beaches and when the weather hits tomorrow, to stay indoors. Travellers in areas under threat should follow the instructions of local authorities and if advised to evacuate, should do so immediately.
Local radio will also have updates and details of evacuation centres.
Contact your local Travel Associates Consultant or call 13 70 71