Cyclone watch issued for Queensland and NSW as storm cell nears

A surfer taking on a large wave at Point Perry as swell from Cyclone Oma begins to arrive on the Sunshine Coast

A surfer taking on a large wave at Point Perry as swell from Cyclone Oma begins to arrive on the Sunshine Coast

Cyclone Oma is storming towards the coast.

"Although Oma is not expected to make landfall in the coming days it will be close enough to produce direct impacts along the Queensland and NSW coast", the Bureau of Meteorology warned.

Gale-force winds were expected to hit coastal parts of Queensland from Friday, particularly the islands and exposed coasts.

Bureau of Meteorology forecaster Adam Blazak said there was still some disagreement about which path the storm will take, but that there was a possibility it could make landfall.

"It's looking increasingly likely that it will track close to the southeast Queensland coast, (but) it's hard to say how close it will get at the moment", she said.

Ms Pattie said southern Capricornia would see some high tides between half a metre and a metre above the highest tide of the year as well as coastal inundation and erosion. Are you prepared for the weather event?

People in the cyclone watch zone have been urged to make preparations should the cyclone threat increase.

The Bureau has also issued a Flood Watch from Gladstone to the New South Wales border.

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Modelling from Europe and the USA shows the system could hit the Queensland coast by the end of the week, bringing 200km/h winds and up to 500mm of rain to the state's southeast, but meteorologist Kimba Wong said there were still many different scenarios for how the cyclone will develop.

Weatherzone meteorologist this morning said eastern NSW will experience rain each day during the next week, although the state's parched west looks to miss out once again.

It is unusual, but not unprecedented, for cyclones to track as far south as Oma could eventually go.

The slow-moving system is in the Coral Sea about 700 kilometres north-east of Brisbane.

Hazardous surf warnings remain in place for Queensland as well as severe weather warning for abnormally high tides for people in parts of Wide Bay, Burnett, Gold Coast, Maroochydore, Moreton Island, Noosa Heads, Caloundra and Rainbow Beach.

"It's all a bit uncertain until Saturday when we should have a better idea of where it is heading but it is all hinging on how close the cyclone comes to the coasts", she said.

Forecasting images showed "the range of likely tracks of the cyclone centre" but this is "uncertainty associated with tropical cyclone forecasting", the Bureau website advises.

Even if it does not cross the mainland, the BOM yesterday upgraded the likelihood of the cyclone impacting the coast to "high", or greater than 50 per cent.

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