The powerful Tropical Cyclone Veronica is slowly tracking towards the coast of Western Australia. The coastal areas are bracing for a particularly intense effects, enhanced by the systems slow motion. Strong winds and torrential rainfall is expected.

The system reached Category 4 strength Thursday, with maximum sustained winds of 195 km/h, sporting a tight, pinhole eye and eyewall and undergoing several eyewall replacement cycles (ERCs). It has been on a gradual weakening trend since then. At 1h UT this morning, March 23, Veronica was a Category 1 system with peak sustained winds of 145 km/h. It has is, however, indicating strengthening over the past several hours, completing a large circular eye.

Tropical cyclone Veronica as seen by Himawari-8 satellite today, March 23 at 9:00 UT.

Veronica is expected to track towards the Pilbara coast, for landfall near Port Hedland as a Category 1 system tomorrow morning (March 24) local time. Major rainfall is expected, as Veronica tracks westward along the coast – rainfall totals up to ~500 mm are expected, resulting in major flooding.

We will be providing further updates soon.