The BOM Has Opened Cyclone Twitter Accounts Just In Time For Storm Season

Tourists are seen standing in Cyclone Ita’s high winds on April 12, 2014 in Port Douglas. Photo: Ian Hitchcock/ Getty.

Australian residents living in cyclone effected regions will now have access to Twitter updates from the Bureau of Meteorology, part of a new initiative implemented today by the weather service.

Part of a planned social media expansion, director of the BOM, Rob Vertessy, says the Twitter warnings will allows the service to remain the most comprehensive source of forecasts and weather information.

“Bureau meteorologists are trained and ready to tweet when a tropical cyclone forms in the Australian region. These tweets will supplement the Bureau’s official watch and warnings,” he said.

The tweets will link back to the BOM’s website where Australians can access updates and information such as its Tropical Cyclone Forecast Track Map.

In October the BOM released its annual Tropical Cyclone Outlook in preparation for the cyclone season which usually spans November through to April.

It reported that the country can expect “average to below-average tropical cyclone activity likely for the 2014-15 season”.

Despite this, Bureau Climate Prediction Manager Dr Andrew Watkins said the El Niño-like ocean pattern occurring in the tropical Pacific Ocean has had an influence on this year’s Tropical Cyclone Outlook and there still remains a 50% chance of El Niño developing during the cyclone season.

“Often we see a lower than average number of cyclones in El Niño years, but this does not mean we can afford to be complacent. Even during El Niño years, there has always been at least one cyclone to cross the Australian coast.

“As cyclone awareness and education campaigns begin around the country… it is a timely reminder that any single cyclone that crosses the coast has the potential to cause significant damage and pose a threat to life.”

Now Read: El Niño Is Coming: Here Are 8 Ways It Will Affect Australia, Including A Drought.

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