Damien delivers rain to Pilbara/Gascoyne

Damien delivers rain to Pilbara/Gascoyne

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While the Department of Fire and Emergency Services (DFES) issued the all-clear from ex-Tropical Cyclone Damien on Monday morning there were flood warnings from Port Hedland to Onslow and a storm warning for the Mid West Gascoyne region.

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WHILE the Department of Fire and Emergency Services (DFES) issued the all-clear from ex-Tropical Cyclone Damien on Monday morning there were flood warnings from Port Hedland to Onslow and a storm warning for the Mid West Gascoyne region.

Ex-Tropical Cyclone Damien left Karratha and Dampier in a state of disrepair after gusts of almost 220 kilometres an hour destroyed homes, damaged power lines - cutting power to about 10,000 homes and businesses and pushing over trees and fences.

The Bureau of Meteorology (BoM) said it was the first cyclone of this magnitude to hit the towns since 1989.

DFES reported that emergency services received 160 calls for assistance from Karratha and Dampier, which were the worst affected by the cyclone - which hit the coast as a category 3 and dropped in intensity as it moved inland towards Tom Price to category 1 before being declared a low pressure storm system.

A BoM spokesperson said that "Karratha had its heaviest February rainfall on February 9, at 161.6mm, since February 9, 2017, (210.6mm), which is also its record February daily rainfall".

"Bryah station in the Gascoyne has had its record February rainfall with 114.4mm - and this is also its highest annual rainfall record," BoM said.

"Previous records were 104.4mm on May 20, 1984 and 76.2mm on February 14, 1961.

"Records for Bryah go back 75 years."

Kimberley Pilbara Cattlemen's Association chief executive officer Emma White said pastoralists who received rain welcomed it, but there were still areas in the Kimberley interior and the western Gascoyne that hadn't received any.

Ms White said the impact of ex-Tropical Cyclone Damien wasn't as bad as ex-Tropical Cyclone Veronica which hit last year, so the damage wouldn't be as great.

"There was not quite as much rain as pastoralists would have liked - as it was concentrated in certain areas," Ms White said.

Bettini Beef, which operates at De Grey, Pyramid and Sherlock stations in the Pilbara, took to Twitter after "recording some impressive rain" with 53mm, 85mm and 81mm respectively on Saturday.

The mining areas received most of the inland falls, with Solomon Airport recording 205mm in 24 hours on the weekend.

In 21 hours to Monday 9am Mingah Springs, east of Mt Augustine, recorded 206mm - with surrounding areas also receiving more than 140mm in the same time frame.

Marble Bar - which received a lot of rain during Ex-Tropical Cyclone Blake - only recorded 26.4mm this time around.

On Tuesday morning, as the pressure system moved further south east, Meekatharra had 35.4mm, while Paynes Find in the Gascoyne recorded 14mm and Leinster in the Goldfields reported 15.6mm .

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