A powerful cyclone carrying winds of up to 263km/h (163 mph) has reached the coast of Queensland, Australia. More than 25,000 people were urged to evacuate ahead of Cyclone Debbie.
The category four storm has already left at least 23,000 homes without power and caused damage on the popular Whitsunday Islands.
The slow-moving cyclone, expected to be Queensland’s most damaging since 2011, is likely to remain over the state for hours, authorities warned. The storm made landfall between Bowen and Airlie Beach, Queensland Police said.
“We are in for a long, tough day,” said Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk. “The intensity and ferocity of the winds is going to be gradually increasing. Everyone is bunkered down.”(BBC,2017).