TROPICAL Cyclone Oma may have started turning away from Queensland, but we are being told not to be complacent, with strong winds and large seas set to continue lashing the coast over the weekend.
Cyclone Oma was expected to turn west towards Queensland before heading north along the coast but it is now forecast to turn east and head another 200km out to sea before adopting a northerly track.
The Bureau of Meteorology says as Oma makes her turn – which will take more than 24 hours for her to complete – her effects will continue to be felt on the Gold Coast.
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The enormous swell being generated by Cyclone Oma caused havoc along a vast stretch of the southeast Queensland coast on Friday and is expected to continue doing so on Saturday.
Monster 12 and 13 metre waves were recorded offshore of Point Lookout on North Stradbroke Island, and offshore of Mooloolaba on the Sunshine Coast on Friday.
Waves reached a maximum height of eleven metres off Tweed Heads, while eight meter waves were recorded offshore of the Gold Coast Seaway.
The Bureau of Meteorology said the waves recorded offshore of North Stradbroke Island and Mooloolaba were larger than those whipped up by Cyclone Oswald.
“This has the potential to be a significant beach erosion event given the combination of the large surf, abnormally high tides and the fact that these conditions should persist for a few days,” the weather bureau said late on Friday.
An 89km/h gust was recorded at the Gold Coast Seaway just after 11.30am on Friday, while a 113km/h gust was recorded at Cape Moreton about 8.30am.
“Locally damaging wind gusts in excess of 90 kilometres per hour are likely about the exposed coast and islands between Sandy Cape and the Qld/NSW border today and Saturday,” the Bureau said.
“These damaging wind gusts may extend to the southern border ranges, inland to about Springbrook and Tamborine Mountain, later today or into Saturday.”
As a result, all 34 beaches on the Gold Coast will remain closed over the weekend.
Swimmers have been warned police will be called to forcibly remove and fine anyone who ignores the warnings and enters the water.
City of Gold Coast has also advised its Waste & Recycling Centres at Coomera, Currumbin, Helensvale, Jacobs Well, Merrimac, Molendinar, Mudgeeraba, Numinbah Valley, Reedy Creek, and Springbrook will be closed on Saturday.
Closures may continue on Sunday, depending on weather conditions. Updates will be posted here.
A number of City-run events have also been postponed, including the La Feista Festival at the Broadwater Parklands and Movies Under The Stars at Burleigh Heads and Broadbeach State Schools.