Cyclone Olivia

Last updated

Category 4 severe tropical cyclone (Aus scale)
Category 4 (Saffir–Simpson scale)

Olivia Apr 10 1996 1123Z.png

Severe Tropical Cyclone Olivia near peak intensity off the coast of Western Australia
Formed 3 April 1996
Dissipated 12 April 1996
Highest winds 10-minute sustained:195 km/h (120 mph)
1-minute sustained:230 km/h (145 mph)
Lowest pressure 925 hPa (mbar); 27.32 inHg
Fatalities None reported
Damage At least $47.5 million (1996 USD)
Areas affected Northern Territory and Western Australia
Part of the 1995–96 Australian region cyclone season

Severe Tropical Cyclone Olivia was a powerful cyclone that produced the highest non-tornadic winds on record on Barrow Island, 408 kilometres per hour (254 mph), breaking the record of 372 km/h (231 mph) on Mount Washington in the United States in April 1934. The 13th named storm of the 1995–96 Australian region cyclone season, Olivia formed on 3 April 1996 to the north of Australia's Northern Territory. The storm moved generally to the southwest, gradually intensifying off Western Australia. On 8 April, Olivia intensified into a severe tropical cyclone and subsequently turned more to the south, steered by a passing trough. On 10 April, Olivia produced the worldwide record strongest gust on Barrow Island, and on the same day the cyclone made landfall near Varanus Island. The storm quickly weakened over land, dissipating over the Great Australian Bight on 12 April.

Tornado violently rotating column of air that is in contact with both the earths surface and a cumulonimbus cloud in the air

A tornado is a rapidly rotating column of air that is in contact with both the surface of the Earth and a cumulonimbus cloud or, in rare cases, the base of a cumulus cloud. The windstorm is often referred to as a twister, whirlwind or cyclone, although the word cyclone is used in meteorology to name a weather system with a low-pressure area in the center around which winds blow counterclockwise in the Northern Hemisphere and clockwise in the Southern. Tornadoes come in many shapes and sizes, and they are often visible in the form of a condensation funnel originating from the base of a cumulonimbus cloud, with a cloud of rotating debris and dust beneath it. Most tornadoes have wind speeds less than 110 miles per hour (180 km/h), are about 250 feet (80 m) across, and travel a few miles before dissipating. The most extreme tornadoes can attain wind speeds of more than 300 miles per hour (480 km/h), are more than two miles (3 km) in diameter, and stay on the ground for dozens of miles.

Barrow Island (Western Australia) island off the coast of Western Australia

Barrow Island is a 202 km2 (78 sq mi) island 50 kilometres (31 mi) northwest off the Pilbara coast of Western Australia. The island is the second largest in Western Australia after Dirk Hartog Island.

Mount Washington (New Hampshire) highest mountain in the US state of New Hampshire

Mount Washington, called Agiocochook by some Native American tribes, is the highest peak in the Northeastern United States at 6,288.2 ft (1,916.6 m) and the most topographically prominent mountain east of the Mississippi River.


While in its formative stages, Olivia produced light rainfall in the Northern Territory. While offshore Western Australia, the cyclone forced oil platforms to shut down, and the combination of high winds and waves caused heavy damage to oil facilities. Onshore, Olivia's high winds damaged several small mining towns, halting operations. Every house in Pannawonica sustained some damage. One person in the town was injured by flying glass and had to be flown to receive treatment, and nine others were lightly injured. The cyclone also produced heavy rainfall and a localized storm surge. Damage was estimated "in the millions". While the storm was dissipating, rough seas in South Australia killed A$60 million (US$47.5 million) worth of farm-raised tuna at Port Lincoln. The name Olivia was retired after the season.

Pannawonica, Western Australia Town in Western Australia

The town of Pannawonica is an iron-ore mining town located in the Pilbara region of Western Australia, near the Robe River, about 200 km south-west from Karratha and 1429 km North from Perth. At the 2016 census, Pannawonica had a population of 695.

A storm surge, storm flood, tidal surge or storm tide is a coastal flood or tsunami-like phenomenon of rising water commonly associated with low pressure weather systems, the severity of which is affected by the shallowness and orientation of the water body relative to storm path, as well as the timing of tides. Most casualties during tropical cyclones occur as the result of storm surges. It is a measure of the rise of water beyond what would be expected by the normal movement related to tides.

South Australia State of Australia

South Australia is a state in the southern central part of Australia. It covers some of the most arid parts of the country. With a total land area of 983,482 square kilometres (379,725 sq mi), it is the fourth-largest of Australia's states and territories by area, and fifth largest by population. It has a total of 1.7 million people, and its population is the second most highly centralised in Australia, after Western Australia, with more than 77 percent of South Australians living in the capital, Adelaide, or its environs. Other population centres in the state are relatively small; Mount Gambier, the second largest centre, has a population of 28,684.

Meteorological history

Map plotting the track and intensity of the storm, according to the Saffir-Simpson scale Olivia 1996 track.png
Map plotting the track and intensity of the storm, according to the Saffir–Simpson scale

In early April 1996, a surge in the trade winds interacted with the monsoon trough to produce an area of convection. [1] On 2 April, the Bureau of Meteorology (BoM) first identified the system as a low to mid-level low pressure area over Indonesia north of Darwin, Australia. Despite strong wind shear, the system slowly became better organized as it moved southward, [2] aided by improving upper-level outflow. [1] Early on 5 April, the Joint Typhoon Warning Center (JTWC) classified the system as Tropical Cyclone 25S as the system began a westward track, [3] steered by a building mid-level ridge to the south. [2] Shortly thereafter, the BoM upgraded the system to a Category 1 cyclone, designating the storm as Tropical Cyclone Olivia. [2] [4]

Trade winds

The trade winds are the prevailing pattern of surface winds from the east toward the west (easterly) found in the tropics, within the lower portion of the Earth's atmosphere, in the lower part of the troposphere near the Earth's equator. The trade winds blow predominantly from the northeast in the Northern Hemisphere and from the southeast in the Southern Hemisphere, strengthening during the winter and when the Arctic oscillation is in its warm phase. Trade winds have been used by captains of sailing ships to cross the world's oceans for centuries, and enabled colonial expansion into the Americas and trade routes to become established across the Atlantic and Pacific oceans.

Monsoon trough

The monsoon trough is a portion of the Intertropical Convergence Zone in the Western Pacific, as depicted by a line on a weather map showing the locations of minimum sea level pressure, and as such, is a convergence zone between the wind patterns of the southern and northern hemispheres.

Indonesia Republic in Southeast Asia

Indonesia, officially the Republic of Indonesia, is a country in Southeast Asia, between the Indian and Pacific oceans. It is the world's largest island country, with more than seventeen thousand islands, and at 1,904,569 square kilometres, the 14th largest by land area and the 7th largest in combined sea and land area. With over 261 million people, it is the world's 4th most populous country as well as the most populous Muslim-majority country. Java, the world's most populous island, contains more than half of the country's population.

In the days following Olivia's development, persistent wind shear prevented convection from developing around the center of circulation. By 8 April, an upper-level trough passed to the south of the nascent cyclone, leading to lower shear. [2] Following this, the system had developed sufficiently for the JTWC to upgrade it to a Category 1 equivalent on the Saffir–Simpson Hurricane Scale (SSHS), estimating 1 minute sustained winds of 120 km/h (75 mph). [3] Around the same time, the BoM upgraded Olivia to a severe tropical cyclone, assessing similar wind speeds but sustained over 10 minutes. [2] [4] After the storm reached this intensity, the mid-level ridge south of the cyclone began to weaken, turning Olivia toward the southwest. By 9 April, the system attained Category 4 intensity according to the BoM as it continued to strengthen. [2] During the afternoon of 9 April, the BoM estimated that Olivia attained its lowest barometric pressure of 925  hPa (mbar), along with 10 minute sustained winds of 195 km/h (120 mph). [2] [4] Around 00:00  UTC on 10 April, the JTWC assessed the cyclone to have attained 1 minute winds of 230 km/h (145 mph), equivalent to a Category 4 on the SSHS. [3] By this time, another trough bypassed the cyclone, causing Olivia to turn to the south and accelerate to the southeast. Early on 10 April, data from a nearby weather radar at the Learmonth Airport near Exmouth, Western Australia, showed that the storm had developed a 65 km (40 mi) wide eye. [2]

Trough (meteorology) elongated region of low atmospheric pressure

A trough is an elongated (extended) region of relatively low atmospheric pressure, often associated with fronts. Troughs may be at the surface, or aloft, or both under various conditions. Most troughs bring clouds, showers, and a wind shift, particularly following the passage of the trough. This results from convergence or "squeezing" which forces lifting of moist air behind the trough line.

Pascal (unit) SI unit of pressure

The pascal is the SI derived unit of pressure used to quantify internal pressure, stress, Young's modulus and ultimate tensile strength. It is defined as one newton per square metre. It is named after the French polymath Blaise Pascal.

Bar (unit) non-SI unit of pressure

The bar is a metric unit of pressure, but is not approved as part of the International System of Units (SI). It is defined as exactly equal to 100,000 Pa, which is slightly less than the current average atmospheric pressure on Earth at sea level.

Late on 10 April, the center of Olivia passed near Barrow Island at peak intensity. Shortly thereafter, the storm passed near Varanus Island as a high-end Category 4 or low-end Category 5 cyclone. [4] [5] Within several hours of passing by Varanus Island, Olivia made landfall near Mardie at peak intensity. [2] Shortly thereafter, the storm began to weaken overland. Accelerating to the southeast, the storm became disorganized and winds decreased below hurricane-force. [4] During the afternoon of 11 April, Olivia weakened to a tropical low over southern Australia. It moved over the Great Australian Bight and lost its identity as a gale-force low on 12 April, [2] after it was absorbed by a trough. [6]

Varanus Island is the largest of the Lowendal Islands, an archipelago off the north west coast of Western Australia, near Karratha in the Pilbara region. It is located at 20°39′3″S115°34′27″E.

Great Australian Bight Oceanic bight off the central and western portions of the southern coastline of mainland Australia

The Great Australian Bight is a large oceanic bight, or open bay, off the central and western portions of the southern coastline of mainland Australia.

Impact and aftermath

As a minimal cyclone in the Timor Sea, Olivia brought minor rainfall and gusty winds to parts of the Northern Territory. [7] On 9 April, the fringes of the storm dropped 84 mm (3.3 in) in the Kimberley region of Western Australia. [8] An oil rig in the Timor Sea recorded a wind gust of 127 km/h (79 mph) during the storm's passage. [7] Offshore, Olivia affected the southern portion of Australia's Northwest Shelf, which had 24 oil and gas facilities. [9] The storm produced large swells up to 21 m (69 ft), in conjunction with extreme wind gusts 265 km/h (165 mph). [2] Waves toppled an oil drilling structure about 40 km (25 mi) northeast of Barrow Island, the first of its kind to fail since the 1980s. The waves also wrecked several anchors for underwater pipelines, although no lines were ruptured. On Barrow Island, the winds knocked over 30  pumpjacks, [9] and several buildings and instruments were damaged, while high waves incurred beach erosion. [8] Damage to offshore platforms was estimated in the millions of dollars. [2]

Timor Sea A sea bounded to the north by the island of Timor, to the east by the Arafura Sea, to the south by Australia

The Timor Sea is a relatively shallow sea bounded to the north by the island of Timor, to the east by the Arafura Sea, to the south by Australia.

Northern Territory federal territory of Australia

The Northern Territory is an Australian territory in the central and central northern regions of Australia. It shares borders with Western Australia to the west, South Australia to the south, and Queensland to the east. To the north, the territory looks out to the Timor Sea, the Arafura Sea and the Gulf of Carpentaria, including Western New Guinea and other Indonesian islands. The NT covers 1,349,129 square kilometres (520,902 sq mi), making it the third-largest Australian federal division, and the 11th-largest country subdivision in the world. It is sparsely populated, with a population of only 246,700, making it the least-populous of Australia's eight states and major territories, with fewer than half as many people as Tasmania.

Kimberley (Western Australia) Region in Western Australia

The Kimberley is the northernmost of the nine regions of Western Australia. It is bordered on the west by the Indian Ocean, on the north by the Timor Sea, on the south by the Great Sandy and Tanami Deserts in the region of Pilbara, and on the east by the Northern Territory.

A group of 17 people, initially considered missing, [10] rode out the storm on the offshore Mackerel Island. Onshore, officials closed a portion of Highway 1 as well as other roads in the area. [11] Ahead of the storm, hundreds of residents in older structures and mobile homes, as well as an aborigine village near Onslow, were ordered to evacuate to safer locations. [12] [13] Five iron mines were closed during the storm's passage, forcing the 1,500 workers to return home. [14] The disruptions from the cyclone affected about 340,000 tonnes of lost production. [15] About 800,000  barrels of lost oil production resulted from closed offshore platforms. Oil fields reopened by 14 April. [16]

Moving ashore Western Australia, Olivia produced peak gusts of 257 km/h (160 mph) in Mardie Station, [14] the station's second-highest wind gust from a tropical cyclone. [2] Olivia also produced gusts of 267 km/h (166 mph) at Varanus Island, which was the highest wind gust on record in Australia, [2] until the higher reading on Barrow Island during the storm was confirmed. [17] It broke the previous peak of 259 km/h (161 mph) set by Cyclone Trixie in 1975, [18] and was later matched by Cyclone Vance in 1999. [5] The high winds at Mardie Station damaged the local airport hangar and several windmills. [14] Farther inland, Olivia still produced wind gusts of 158 km/h (98 mph) in Pannawonica, which damaged many roofs, trees, and power lines. The town's police station and medical center lost their roofs during the storm, [19] and every house sustained some damage. [20] Of the 82 houses in the small town, 55 lost their roof. It was estimated that Pannawonica would remain without power for three weeks. One person in town was injured by flying broken glass, who had to be airlifted to Karratha for medical attention. In nearby Yarraloola, nearly every building was damaged, and the roofs of several farm buildings were ripped off. Several other small towns in the region sustained damage to roofs, power lines, and trees, [21] and a 24 year old roadhouse was destroyed along the Fortescue River. [22] Olivia also dropped heavy rainfall, peaking at 167 mm (6.6 in) in Red Hill, although flooding was not significant. [6] The storm also produced a 2 m (6.6 ft) storm surge in localized areas. [7] At the port of Dampier, the storm sank three boats, although no one was aboard. [21] Damage was estimated in the "millions of dollars", according to a local newspaper, [14] and overall, 10 people were injured. [23]

As the remnants of Olivia moved through Australia, they dropped heavy rainfall and brought gusty winds to South Australia. Cape Willoughby recorded gusts of 106 km/h (66 mph) on 12 April, strong enough to knock down tree branches on nearby Kangaroo Island. [8] At Port Lincoln, sediment stirred up by Olivia's remnants killed 60,000 farmed tuna, worth about A$60 million (US$47.5 million). The fish were in cages and died due to abnormally high oxygen levels in the water, caused by Olivia's high winds and rough waves. [24] The remnants of Olivia later brought rainfall to the states of Victoria and Tasmania. [8]

The name "Olivia" was later retired from the list of tropical cyclone names for the Australian region. [25] After the storm's passage, the Royal Australian Air Force flew six generators to Pannawonica after the town was out of power for two nights, [26] and the Western Australian government sent another 13 generators. [27] Residents in the town received counseling to cope with the stress of the storm's aftermath. [21]


At 10:55 UTC on 10 April 1996 along the offshore Barrow Island, an automatic privately operated anemometer recorded a three-second wind gust of 408 km/h (253 mph), at a position 10 m (33 ft) above sea level. The BoM was initially unsure of the veracity of the reading, although a team at the 1999 Offshore Technology Conference presented the reading as the highest wind gust on Earth. [17] In 2009, the World Meteorological Organization Commission for Climatology researched whether Hurricane Gustav in 2008 produced a record 340 km/h (211 mph) gust on Pinar del Rio, Cuba; [28] one committee member recalled the gust set during Olivia, which spurred the investigation. The reading occurred along the western edge of the eyewall, possibly related to mesovortices. Based on other similarly high wind gusts during Olivia 369 km/h (229 mph) and 374 km/h (232 mph) observed within five minutes of the record gust the team confirmed that the instrument was observing properly during the storm. The same anemometer also recorded five-minute sustained winds of 178 km/h (111 mph), causing a much greater than normal ratio of gusts to sustained winds. The team confirmed that the instrument was regularly inspected and calibrated, and that the reading was during the passage of the eyewall. [17]

On 26 January 2010, nearly 14 years later, the World Meteorological Organization announced that the wind gust was the highest recorded worldwide. This gust surpassed the previous non-tornadic wind speed of 372 km/h (231 mph) on Mount Washington in the United States in April 1934. [29] The long delay was partly due to the anemometer not being owned by the BoM, and as a result the agency did not enact a follow-up investigation. Despite the high winds, the anemometer and a nearby building were not damaged due to the winds occurring over a very short time. [17]

See also

Related Research Articles

Typhoon Gay (1989) Pacific typhoon and North Indian cyclone in 1989

Typhoon Gay, also known as the Kavali Cyclone of 1989, was a small but powerful tropical cyclone that caused more than 800 fatalities in and around the Gulf of Thailand in November 1989. The worst typhoon to affect the Malay Peninsula in 35 years, Gay originated from a monsoon trough over the Gulf of Thailand in early-November. Owing to favorable atmospheric conditions, the storm rapidly intensified, attaining winds of more than 120 km/h (75 mph) by 3 November. Later that day, Gay became the first typhoon since 1891 to make landfall in Thailand, striking Chumphon Province with winds of 185 km/h (115 mph). The small storm emerged into the Bay of Bengal and gradually reorganized over the following days as it approached southeastern India. On 8 November, Gay attained its peak intensity as a Category 5–equivalent cyclone with winds of 260 km/h (160 mph). The typhoon then moved ashore near Kavali, Andhra Pradesh. Rapid weakening ensued inland, and Gay dissipated over Maharashtra early on 10 November.

1992 North Indian Ocean cyclone season cyclone season in the North Indian ocean

The 1992 North Indian Ocean cyclone season was unofficially the most active year on record for the basin, with 10 tropical storms developing, according to the Joint Typhoon Warning Center (JTWC). There are two main seas in the North Indian Ocean – the Bay of Bengal to the east of the Indian subcontinent – and the Arabian Sea to the west of India. The official Regional Specialized Meteorological Centre in this basin is the India Meteorological Department (IMD), while the JTWC releases unofficial advisories. An average of four to six storms form in the North Indian Ocean every season with peaks in May and November. Cyclones occurring between the meridians 45°E and 100°E are included in the season by the IMD.

1989 Pacific typhoon season typhoon season in the Pacific Ocean

The 1989 Pacific typhoon season was a highly above-average season. It has no official bounds; it ran year-round in 1989, but most tropical cyclones tend to form in the northwestern Pacific Ocean between May and November. These dates conventionally delimit the period of each year when most tropical cyclones form in the northwestern Pacific Ocean. Tropical Storms forming in the Western Pacific basin were assigned a name by the Joint Typhoon Warning Center. Tropical depressions that enter or form in the Philippine area of responsibility are assigned a name by the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration or PAGASA. This can often result in the same storm having two names.

1995–96 South-West Indian Ocean cyclone season cyclone season in the South-West Indian ocean

The 1995–96 South-West Indian Ocean cyclone season was a moderately active season that included Cyclone Bonita, which was the first known tropical cyclone to cross from the southern Indian Ocean into the southern Atlantic Ocean. Tropical activity lasted for about six months from the middle of November 1995 to early May 1996. The first storm, Intense Tropical Cyclone Agnielle, formed in the adjacent Australian basin on November 16 and later reached peak winds in the south-west Indian Ocean. The next named storm after Agnielle was Bonita, which formed in early January and killed 42 people. The basin was most active in February, with two tropical cyclones, or the equivalent of a minimal hurricane, as well as a severe tropical storm. The first of these three was Doloresse, which killed 67 people due to a shipwreck in the Comoros. The next storm was Cyclone Edwige, which caused heavy crop damage on Mauritius before looping along the east coast of Madagascar. In March, both Cyclone Flossy and Tropical Storm Guylianne passed near the Mascarene Islands, producing heavy rainfall and gusty winds.

Typhoon Maemi Pacific typhoon in 2003

Typhoon Maemi, known in the Philippines as Typhoon Pogi, was the most powerful typhoon to strike South Korea since record-keeping began in the country in 1904. Maemi formed on September 4, 2003 from a disturbance in a monsoon trough in the western Pacific Ocean. It slowly intensified into Tropical Storm Maemi while moving northwestward, becoming a typhoon on September 8. That day, favorable conditions facilitated more rapid strengthening; the storm developed a well-defined eye and reached peak maximum sustained winds of 195 km/h (120 mph). While near peak intensity, Maemi decelerated and began turning to the north-northeast. Soon after, the eyewall passed over the Japanese island of Miyako-jima on September 10 and produced an air pressure reading of 912 mbar (26.9 inHg), the fourth-lowest recorded in the nation. Due to warm waters, Maemi was able to maintain much of its intensity before it made landfall just west of Busan, South Korea, on September 12. The typhoon became extratropical in the Sea of Japan the next day, although its remnants persisted for several days, lashing northern Japan with strong winds.

Typhoon Dot (1985) Pacific typhoon in 1985

Typhoon Dot, known in the Philippines as Typhoon Saling, was the strongest storm of the 1985 season. Dot originated from a small area of thunderstorm activity in early to mid October. The system was first classified on October 11, and steadily intensified over the next few days. Dot attained typhoon strength on October 15, and subsequently entered a period of explosive deepening, which was not anticipated by forecasters. The next day the intensification rate slowed, but that evening, Dot attained its maximum intensify. A steady weakening trend began on October 17, though the system maintained typhoon intensity through the passage of the Philippines. After entering the South China Sea late on October 18, Dot briefly re-intensified, only to weaken as it approached Vietnam. On October 21, Dot struck Vietnam while still a typhoon, but dissipated the next day over the high terrain of the nation.

1995–96 Australian region cyclone season cyclone season in the Australian region

The 1995–96 Australian region cyclone season was an active Australian cyclone season, with Western Australia experiencing a record number of landfalling intense storms in the Pilbara region. The season produced a total of 19 tropical cyclones, of which 14 developed into named storms and 9 reached severe tropical cyclone status. The strongest of the season was Severe Tropical Cyclone Olivia, which also produced the highest recorded wind gust on record of 408 km/h (253 mph). Though several systems impacted land, the general sparsity of population centres in Australia limits the scale of damage. One person was confirmed to have been killed and cumulative losses were estimated at A$77 million (US$58.5 million).

Cyclone Orson Category 5 Australian region cyclone in 1989

Severe Tropical Cyclone Orson was the fourth most intense cyclone ever recorded in the Australian region. Forming out of a tropical low on 17 April 1989, Orson gradually intensified as it tracked towards the west. After attaining Category 5 intensity on 20 April, the storm began to track southward and accelerated. The following day, the cyclone reached its peak intensity with winds of 250 km/h and a barometric pressure of 904 hPa (mbar). Orson maintained this intensity for nearly two days before making landfall near Dampier. The cyclone rapidly weakened after landfall as it accelerated to the southeast. After moving into the Great Australian Bight on 24 April, the storm dissipated.

1988–89 Australian region cyclone season cyclone season in the Australian region

The 1988–89 Australian region cyclone season was a slightly above average tropical cyclone season. It officially started on 1 November 1988, and officially ended on 30 April 1989. The regional tropical cyclone operational plan defines a "tropical cyclone year" separately from a "tropical cyclone season"; the "tropical cyclone year" began on 1 July 1988 and ended on 30 June 1989.

Cyclone Rewa Category 5 South Pacific and Australian region cyclone in 1993 and 1994

Severe Tropical Cyclone Rewa affected six countries and caused 22 deaths on its 28-day journey across the South Pacific Ocean in December 1993 and January 1994. Cyclone Rewa developed from a tropical disturbance on 28 December south of Nauru. After forming, Rewa moved southwest through the Solomon Islands, crossing the 160th meridian east from the South Pacific basin into the Australian region. The cyclone began to strengthen steadily and turned southward, paralleling the eastern Australian coast through 31 December. Rewa reached its initial peak intensity as a Category 4 tropical cyclone on 2 January. It maintained this intensity for about 12 hours before an increase in wind shear induced its weakening by 3 January. The cyclone turned southeastward and moved back into the South Pacific basin on 4 January, before it passed over New Caledonia between 5–6 January. After affecting New Caledonia, Rewa weakened to a tropical depression and turned northwestward before re-entering the Australian basin on 10 January.

Cyclone Keila North Indian cyclone in 2011

Cyclonic Storm Keila was the first named storm of the 2011 North Indian Ocean cyclone season. A weak system for much of its duration, Keila developed in the western Arabian Sea in late October 2011, amid an area of marginally favorable conditions. On November 2, it briefly organized enough to be classified as a cyclonic storm, which has maximum sustained winds of at least 65 km/h (40 mph). Given the name Keila by the India Meteorological Department (IMD), the storm quickly moved ashore southern Oman near Salalah, and weakened while meandering over the country. The remnants soon after moved offshore, dissipating on November 4.

Typhoon Sinlaku (2002) Pacific typhoon in 2002

Typhoon Sinlaku was a damaging typhoon that affected Okinawa, Taiwan, and eastern China in September 2002. The 16th named storm of the 2002 Pacific typhoon season, Sinlaku formed on August 27 northeast of the Northern Marianas Islands. After initially moving to the north, it began a generally westward motion that it maintained for the rest of its duration. Sinlaku strengthened into a typhoon and attained its peak winds on August 31. Over the next few days, it fluctuated slightly in intensity while moving over or near the Ryukyu Islands. On September 4, the typhoon's eye crossed over Okinawa. It dropped heavy rainfall and produced strong winds that left over 100,000 people without power. Damage on the island was estimated at $14.3 million.

Typhoon Higos (2002) Pacific typhoon in 2002

Typhoon Higos was considered the third strongest typhoon to affect Tokyo since World War II. The 21st named storm of the 2002 Pacific typhoon season, Higos developed on September 25 east of the Northern Marianas Islands. It tracked west-northwestward for its first few days, steadily intensifying into a powerful typhoon by September 29. Higos subsequently weakened and turned to the north-northeast toward Japan, making landfall in that country's Kanagawa Prefecture on October 1. It weakened while crossing Honshu, and shortly after striking Hokkaidō, Higos became extratropical on October 2. The remnants passed over Sakhalin and dissipated on October 4.

Typhoon Rammasun (2002) Pacific typhoon in 2002

Typhoon Rammasun, known in the Philippines as Typhoon Florita, was the first of four typhoons to contribute to heavy rainfall and deadly flooding in the Philippines in July 2002. The fifth tropical cyclone of the 2002 Pacific typhoon season, Rammasun developed around the same time as Typhoon Chataan, only further to the west. The storm tracked northwestward toward Taiwan, and on July 2 it attained its peak intensity with winds of 160 km/h (100 mph). Rammasun turned northward, passing east of Taiwan and China. In Taiwan, the outer rainbands dropped rainfall that alleviated drought conditions. In China, the rainfall occurred after previously wet conditions, resulting in additional flooding, although damage was less than expected; there was about $85 million in crop and fishery damage in one province.

Cyclone Rusty

Severe Tropical Cyclone Rusty was a strong, slow-moving tropical cyclone that produced record duration gale-force winds in Port Hedland, Western Australia in late February 2013. Originating as an area of low pressure on 22 February well to the northwest of the Kimberley region of Western Australia, the precursor to Rusty steadily developed within a favourable environment. Gradually decreasing surface pressures in the region signaled intensification and the low was classified as Tropical Cyclone Rusty on 23 February. Although a large, sprawling system, near-record high sea surface temperatures enabled Rusty to quickly deepen. Becoming essentially stationary on 25 February, the system acquired hurricane-force winds as its core improved in structure. The cyclone achieved its peak intensity two days later with maximum ten-minute sustained winds of 165 km/h (105 mph) and a barometric pressure of 944 hPa. Thereafter, interaction with land caused its core to collapse before the system made landfall near Pardoo Station. Rusty weakened below cyclone strength on 28 February. Its remnants persisted over Western Australia for several more days before being absorbed into an extratropical cyclone on 5 March.

Cyclone Joy struck Australia in late 1990

Severe Tropical Cyclone Joy struck Australia in late 1990, causing the third highest floods on record in Rockhampton, Queensland. This cyclone began as a weak tropical low near the Solomon Islands, and initially moved westward. On 18 December, it was named Joy, becoming the 2nd named storm of the 1990–91 Australian region cyclone season. After turning southwest, Joy developed a well-defined eye and strengthened to maximum sustained winds of 165 km/h (103 mph) while approaching Cairns in Far North Queensland. Brushing the city with strong winds, the cyclone soon weakened and turned southeast. Joy later curved back southwest, making landfall near Townsville, Queensland on 26 December. It dissipated the next day; remnant moisture continued as torrential rainfall over Queensland for two weeks.

Cyclone Bobby

Severe Tropical Cyclone Bobby set numerous monthly rainfall records in parts of the Goldfields-Esperance regions of Western Australia, dropping up to 400 mm (16 in) of rain in February 1995. The fourth named storm of the 1994–95 Australian region cyclone season, Bobby developed as a tropical low embedded within a monsoon trough situated north of the Northern Territory coastline on 19 February. The storm gradually drifted southwestward and later southward under low wind shear, strengthening enough to be assigned the name Bobby by the Australian Bureau of Meteorology (BoM). The storm rapidly deepened as it approached the coast of Western Australia, and attained its peak intensity of 925 mbar at 0900 UTC on 24 February with 10-minute maximum sustained winds of 195 km/h (120 mph). After making landfall as a somewhat weaker cyclone near Onslow, the remnants of Bobby drifted southeastward, gradually weakening, before dissipating over the southern reaches of Western Australia.

Tropical Storm Tess (1988)

Tropical Storm Tess known in the Philippines as Tropical Storm Welpring was the second of three tropical cyclones to directly impact the Philippines in a two-week time frame in 1988. An area of disturbed weather near the Philippines was first observed on November 1. Following an increase in organization, the disturbance was designated as a tropical cyclone on November 4. Moving west, Tess steadily strengthened due to favorable conditions aloft. During the evening of November 5, Tess was estimated to have achieved its highest intensity, with winds of 115 km/h (70 mph). Rapid weakening then ensured as Tess neared Vietnam, and after making landfall in the country on November 6, Tess dissipated the next day.

Cyclone Fergus

Cyclone fergus was a tropical cyclone, later becoming an extratropical cyclone, that affected islands in the south-west Pacific Ocean. It lasted from December 23, 1996, to January 1, 1997, and reached speeds of up to 165 kilometers per hour, or 90 miles per hour. In additions to its winds, the storm caused heavy rains and severe flooding, causing significant damage to property in some areas.

Typhoon Vera (1986)

Typhoon Vera, known as Typhoon Loleng in the Philippines, affected Okinawa, China, and South Korea during August 1986. A tropical depression formed on August 13 and attained tropical storm intensity later that day. Initially, Vera meandered in the monsoon trough. On August 17, however, the system abruptly re-formed to east-northeast, and subsequently began to move east and then north. Vera became a typhoon on August 20, and peaked in intensity two days later. Typhoon Vera then turned west-northwest and slowly weakened as it approached Okinawa. After passing near the island, Vera turned north as it tracked east of China. The typhoon made landfall on South Korea on August 28 as a tropical storm, and the next day, transitioned into an extratropical cyclone.


  1. 1 2 Darwin Regional Specialised Meteorological Centre (April 1996). "Darwin Tropical Diagnostic Statement" (PDF). 15 (4). Bureau of Meteorology: 2. Retrieved 13 January 2016.
  2. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 Jeff Callaghan (August 1997). "The South Pacific and southeast Indian Ocean tropical cyclone season 1995-96" (PDF). Australian Bureau of Meteorology. Retrieved 27 January 2010.
  3. 1 2 3 Joint Typhoon Warning Center (1997). "Cyclone 25S Best Track". United States Navy. Retrieved 27 January 2010.
  4. 1 2 3 4 5 "The Australian Tropical Cyclone Database" (CSV). Australian Bureau of Meteorology. A guide on how to read the database is available here.
  5. 1 2 "Tropical Cyclones in Western Australia - Extremes". Australian Bureau of Meteorology. 2010. Retrieved 27 January 2010.
  6. 1 2 "Tropical Cyclone Olivia". Australian Bureau of Meteorology. Retrieved January 12, 2016.
  7. 1 2 3 "Northern Territory Cyclones: Tropical Cyclone Olivia". Australian Bureau of Meteorology. 1997. Retrieved March 15, 2010.
  8. 1 2 3 4 "Severe Weather Summary - April 1996". Australian Bureau of Meteorology. Retrieved January 14, 2016.
  9. 1 2 S.J. Buchan; P.G. Black; R.L. Cohen (1999). The Impact of Tropical Cyclone Olivia on Australia's Northwest Shelf (PDF). Offshore Technology Conference. Retrieved January 14, 2016.
  10. "Small boats in path of cyclone". The Advertiser. 11 April 1996.  via Lexis Nexis (subscription required)
  11. Nigel Wilson; Natalie O'Brien (11 April 1996). "Cyclone tears into Pilbara". The Australian.  via Lexis Nexis (subscription required)
  12. "International news". Associated Press. 10 April 1996.  via Lexis Nexis (subscription required)
  13. Natalie O'Brien; Nigel Wilson (11 April 1996). "Cyclone tears into Pilbara". The Australian. Associated Press.  via Lexis Nexis (subscription required)
  14. 1 2 3 4 "Cyclone flattens town". The Daily Telegraph. 11 April 1996.  via Lexis Nexis (subscription required)
  15. Kate Askew (12 April 1996). "Cyclone hits output from major mines". The Advertiser.  via Lexis Nexis (subscription required)
  16. "Some Australian fields set to reopen". Platt's Oilgram Price Report. 15 April 1996.  via Lexis Nexis (subscription required)
  17. 1 2 3 4 J. Courtney; et al. (2012). "Documentation and verification of the world extreme wind gust record: 113.3 m s–1 on Barrow Island, Australia, during passage of tropical cyclone Olivia" (PDF). Australian Meteorological and Oceanographic Journal (62). Retrieved January 13, 2016.
  18. Penelope Green (12 April 1996). "Mop-up begins after near-record cyclone". The Australian.  via Lexis Nexis (subscription required)
  19. "Cyclone hits Western Australia". Agence France-Presse. 11 April 1996.  via Lexis Nexis (subscription required)
  20. Steve Newman (April 14, 1996). "Earthweek: Diary of a Planet". The Daily Gazette. Retrieved January 12, 2016.
  21. 1 2 3 Kirsten Stoney (April 12, 1996). "Havoc as cyclone moves inland". The Advertiser.  via Lexis Nexis (subscription required)
  22. "Devastation as Olivia rips into roadhouse". Hobart Mercury. 12 April 1996.  via Lexis Nexis (subscription required)
  23. John Miller (2007). Australia's Greatest Disasters. Exisle Publishing Limited. p. 80.
  24. Huw Morgan (19 April 1996). "$60 Million Harvest Lost at Sea". The Advertiser.  via Lexis Nexis (subscription required)
  25. RA V Tropical Cyclone Committee (May 5, 2015). List of Tropical Cyclone Names withdrawn from use due to a Cyclone's Negative Impact on one or more countries (PDF) (Tropical Cyclone Operational Plan for the South-East Indian Ocean and the Southern Pacific Ocean 2014). World Meteorological Organization. pp. 2B–1 – 2B–4 (23 – 26). Archived (PDF) from the original on May 9, 2015. Retrieved May 9, 2015.
  26. "RAAF lights town". Daily Telegraph. April 13, 1996.  via Lexis Nexis (subscription required)
  27. "Supplies on way". Courier Mail. April 13, 1996.  via Lexis Nexis (subscription required)
  28. Beven II, John L; Kimberlain, Todd B; National Hurricane Center (22 January 2009). Hurricane Gustav (PDF) (Tropical Cyclone Report). United States National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's National Weather Service. p. 4. Archived (PDF) from the original on 9 June 2012. Retrieved 1 June 2012.
  29. "Highest surface wind speed - Tropical Cyclone Olivia sets world record". World Record Academy. 26 January 2010. Retrieved 28 January 2010.