Lincoln hits WA after a week of soaking the Top End

Lincoln has crossed the country from east to west.

Lincoln has crossed the country from east to west.

After wandering for more than a week across the Top End, ex-Tropical Cyclone Lincoln is expected to have officially crossed the country from east to west when it drenches WA’s Gascoyne coast.

The system is forecast to move south and pass to the west of the Exmouth-Ningaloo area before crossing the Gascoyne coast on Saturday night, with those in its path warned to prepare for strong winds and heavy rain.

The Bureau of Meteorology has downgraded Lincoln, however meteorologist James Ashley says wind gusts in the Carnarvon-Shark Bay area are still likely to reach 120km/h.

“(It’s) still enough wind to produce damage but certainly not the intense cyclone systems that we can have in WA,” he said.

Heavy rainfall of 50 to 150mm is possible over 24 hours, along with flash flooding.

Lincoln was initially predicted to cross the coast south of Coral Bay as a category 1 or 2 system but late on Friday the bureau scaled back its projections.

Downgraded alert

The weather system is less likely to redevelop into a tropical cyclone and is expected to weaken further as it moves across land, southeast through the state’s central west.

A cyclone yellow alert was issued late Friday for people in or near coastal communities and offshore islands between North West Cape, Coral Bay and Giralia, including Exmouth.

Evacuation centres have been opened in Carnarvon and Exmouth and the North West Coastal Highway and six other key roads in the area have been closed.

Flood watches have been issued for catchments along the Pilbara and Gascoyne coastlines.

Urban search and rescue specialists are among the dozens of emergency service personnel deployed to communities likely to be affected.

Lincoln crossed the Northern Territory coast from the Gulf of Carpentaria late last week as a category 1 cyclone before moving inland across the Top End and into WA as a storm.

It dumped heavy rain across a wide area triggering flood watches and warnings in northwest Queensland, the NT and northern WA before moving offshore again on Wednesday.


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