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    Unpredictable weather gets Cairns residents hot and bothered


    An estimated 900 homes in Redlynch, Caravonica and Kamerunga lost power this morning as the city comes to grips with steamy temperatures and unpredictable winds.

    Ergon Energy crews worked to restore power to suburbs north-west of Cairns after the network sustained damage - believed to have been caused by a falling tree - at around 9.30am this morning.

    WIND GUSTS IN REDLYNCH

    BoM Duty forecaster Bill O’Connor said katabatic winds lashed the Redlynch area as a result of strong winds above the Atherton Tablelands.

    “Fresh, gusty westerly winds are blowing at about 30-35 knots (50-60km/ph) a couple of thousand feet above the Tablelands,” Mr O’Connor told TropicNow.

    “These winds then rush down the mountains and through valleys to create the katabatic winds we’re seeing here now.

    “We’re going to see these winds easing as the day warms up and the ground air rises. We may see some more winds tomorrow morning but they won’t be as strong."

    The local power outage comes as Ergon attempts to restore power to an estimated 63,000 residents in towns reeling in the aftermath of Cyclone Debbie.

    STEAMY WEATHER

    The loss of power for Cairns residents comes at a time when the city is battling through unseasonably hot and humid temperatures, with some areas experiencing temperatures up to 5C hotter than average due to the influence of Cyclone Debbie.

    Mr O’Connor said the Tropical North would continue to swelter in mid-30s temperatures until the weekend. The minimum temperature recorded in Cairns last night was a stifling 27.7C and 82 percent humidity.

    “We don’t expect any real break in the heat until the weekend, once Debbie has moved further away and the southeasterly breezes pick up to cool things down," he said. “We’ll also hopefully see a few showers developing as we head into the weekend.”

    Bureau of Meteorology forecaster Shaun Luscombe told TropicNow earlier this week that westerly winds created by Debbie – 500-plus kilometres to the south though she is – were behind the jump in the mercury.

    “Cyclonic flow winds are dragging a warm air mass down from the Tablelands to the coast and producing these high temperatures,” Mr Luscombe said.