New cyclone brewing off Fiji

THE potential for the development of a significant tropical cyclone near Fiji within the next 24 hours has been upgraded  again, from fair to to good, by the US Navy Joint Typhoon Warning Centre.


The centre, on its website update today, said several factors indicated  the "disturbance" was now transitioning into a warm core cyclone. It said the low-level centre of the tropical disturbance had maximum sustained surface winds estimated at 25 to 30 knots.


However, while touring cyclone-ravaged Tully earlier in the day, Premier Anna Bligh said the threat of a new cyclone forming off Fiji was unlikely.


"We're watching every possible weather formation in the region," she said.


"The bureau tells me that they are monitoring this new system near Fiji but they are unconcerned about it.


"It's modelled to travel significantly south and not hit the Queensland coast."


A Bureau of Meteorology spokesman said they were monitoring a "disturbance" in the Coral Sea southeast of Fiji.


"It's just one of many disturbances you get out in the Coral Sea at this time of year," he said.


"It's certainly not a cyclone and we don't expect anything of it at this stage.


"We've got more important things to worry about closer to home than something over 2000 kilometres out in the Coral Sea."


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