Tropical Cyclone Debbie made landfall on March 28, 2017 in northeast Australia's Queensland state as the equivalent of a Category 4 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson scale.
(MORE: Hurricane Central)
Radar and satellite imagery indicated the eye of Debbie came ashore near Airlie Beach, about 560 miles north-northwest of the capital of Queensland, Brisbane, around midday on March 28, with estimated 10-minute sustained winds of about 120 mph.
Hamilton Island, which is located just off the coast near Airlie Beach, clocked a peak wind gust of 163 mph as well as a 10-minute sustained wind of 119 mph as the eyewall of Debbie lashed the island.
(NEWS: Impact of Debbie in Queensland)
These intense winds were enough to damage the radar at Bowen, Australia, about 35 miles northwest of Airlie Beach. Just under 10 inches of rain had fallen in Bowen (248 millimeters), according to ABC News.
A peak storm surge of 2.7 meters (about 8.9 feet), was measured at Laguna Quays, where onshore winds piled water into a bay south of the eye.
Debbie was the first tropical cyclone of hurricane strength to impact northeast Australia (Queensland) since Tropical Cyclone Marcia did so in February 2015. Marcia made landfall just north of Rockhampton, which is south of where Debbie moved inland.
The tropical cyclone season in Australia had been very quiet and has set records for the lack of tropical cyclone activity. Tropical cyclone season in the Southern Hemisphere is Nov. 1 through April 30, although tropical cyclones can form in any month.
(MORE: Southern Hemisphere's Tropical Cyclone Streak Shattered)
In late January, a record was set for longest time without a hurricane-strength tropical system (maximum sustained winds of 74 mph or greater) in any of the three major Southern Hemisphere basins: 280 days.
Last season was quiet in the Australia region, as well, with only one hurricane-strength system developing.
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