Australia


Ului weakens as north Qld mops up

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Cyclone Ului has been downgraded to a tropical low as the system moves inland in north Queensland.

It crossed the coast as a category three cyclone early this morning near Airlie Beach, north of Mackay, before steadily losing strength.

The State Emergency Service (SES) has responded to about 600 calls for help across the cyclone region.


Queensland assesses cyclone damage

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North Queensland residents have woken to damage wrought by Cyclone Ului, which crossed the coast near Airlie Beach in the Whitsundays early this morning.

There are reports of trees and power lines being brought down by winds that reached 200 kilometres an hour when Ului hit land at 1.30am (AEST) as a category three storm.

It's now been downgraded to a category two and is expected to weaken to a rain depression by this afternoon.


Category 3 severe tropical cyclone Ului makes landfall

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Severe Tropical Cyclone Ului, category 3, made landfall this hour near Proserpine with wind gusts at 205km/h says WeatherWatch.co.nz.

Head weather analyst Philip Duncan says live rain radar images clearly show the centre of the storm moving inland.  "The cyclone has made a direct hit between Proserpine and Bowen on the Queensland coast".

Full details, news, live rain radar, weather maps below...


Amazing VIDEOS: Huge thunderstorm causes flash flooding in Melbourne

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Victorians are still reeling from yesterday's wild weather as they brace for possible flash flooding today.

Wild weather dumped heavy rainfall over much of Victoria overnight, following severe afternoon thunderstorms that caused flooding and hail damage across Melbourne.

Storm damage to Melbourne's Docklands Stadium is reported to be in the millions after part of the roof collapsed and bars flooded.


Desert town baffled as fish fall from sky

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A town in the northern Australian desert has been pelted in a downpour - of fish.

Marine life tumbled out of the sky on two occasions last week, raining down on the Northern Territory town of Lajamanu, about 550km southwest of Katherine. The town is hundreds of kilometres from lakes and the coast.

The Northern Territory News reported yesterday that resident Christine Balmer did a double-take as the fish - believed to be small spangled perch - fell from the sky.


Soggy southeast Oz

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It's been a damp time for southeastern parts of Australia in the last 3 weeks bringing smiles to many farmers in rural areas but not all residents in the big cities are entirely happy.

For the month of February, Sydney has already hit over 200% of their average monthly rainfall, Canberra has topped 250% and Melbourne just under 150%.


Aussie - highest 24hr rainfall rates in more than a century for some

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UPDATED
Queensland's South-East is mopping up after some of the highest rainfalls seen in almost a century.

Two deaths have been blamed on the weekend deluge.  A 47-year-old woman was swept away when a wall of water came rushing through Bouldercombe Gorge south of Rockhampton yesterday.


Olga fades

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Flooding and strong winds have been reported in north Queensland with cyclone Olga being downgraded to a tropical low.

Olga crossed the coast west of Karumba in the Gulf Of Carpentaria bringing with it gusts up to 110 kilometres an hour.

A spokesman from the Bureau of Meteorology in Australia says while the damage has been light there's still be flooding in the region.


Temps surge to mid 40s in Australia

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Temperatures across Victoria and South Australia have surged in to mid-40s this afternoon prompting a "catastrophic" fire warning to be issued.

In the south east centre of Keith temperatures hit 44.6 degrees at 3:30pm local time with 44 recorded in Murray. 

Melbourne has 43 degrees this hour with up to 44 degrees in rural parts of Victoria.


Catastrophic fire alert in South Australia

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There's a catastrophic bushfire alert for South Australia's West Coast today as temperatures head for 43 in some parts of the state.

Brenton Eden from the Country Fire Authority warns the outlook for tomorrow is even worse.

He's told Sky News all possible resources are being deployed during the extreme conditions and there'll be 10,000 firefighters on the ground as well as 15 aircraft.