Cyclone Yasi

Jessica Ward

Tropical Cyclones

When a thunderstorm is above a body of water at a warm temperature (26.5° or above) and the heat in the ocean continues down a significant amount, this is the beginning of a possible cyclone. The warm water evaporates and the cool air causes it to condense into clouds releasing the heat rather quickly. The heat energy and the rotation of the earth then cause the air to start spinning around that area.

Cyclones only appear in particular parts around the world. Sea temperatures must be 26.5 degrees or above for a cyclone to form. Because cyclones rely on the circulation of the Earth, they form away from the equator, in the tropics. The effect of the earth spinning helps the wind rotate. Tropical cyclones generally form between approximately 5° and 30° latitude. An average tropical cyclone can travel about 300 to 400 miles a day, or about 3,000 miles before it dies out.

Cyclones can be incredibly destructive, they destroy buildings and homes, and they created floods and can be quite deadly. The cyclones come with incredibly strong winds and large and strong amounts of rainfall.


- Region and special interaction can be used when talking about tropical cyclones and how they’re formed, because cyclones can only form in certain areas on the earth. Also the different kinds of energy and temperatures ect effect each other during the formation of a Cyclone

Cyclone YASI

It's course

Cyclone Yasi started developing in the northwest of Fiji on the 29th January 2011. The system quickly exaggerated into a cyclone at the north of Vanuatu. Yasi continued a westward track and strengthened rapidly. On the 1st February, Yasi started to take a west-southwestward track to the coast of Queensland. Yasi hit the coast of Queensland near Mission Beach on 3 February 2011 where it continued to travel west across North Queensland before weakening to a tropical low near Mount Isa.

Yasi was at its reached its highest point just before hitting Australia. As the cyclone hit the land it slowly started to weaken the further it continued on to the land.


- Movement and distance are two KGI’s used when talking about the pathway of a cyclone because to explain that, you need to know where its moved over a certain time frame and how far.


Yasi is one of if not the most powerful cyclones to have affected Queensland Australia. The cyclone had a strong core with damaging winds and heavy rain. There are no verified recordings of the maximum wind gusts at the center of the cyclone, but wind gusts of about 285 km/h or more were possible. It is predicted there was around 1,000 mm of rainfall during Yasi, the highest totals were in South Mission Beach (471mm), Hawkins Creek (464mm), Zattas (407mm), Bulgun Creek (373mm) along the Tully and Herbert River catchments.


- Spatial change over time is good to use when talking about the characteristics of a cyclone, because you need to know what things were originally and how they have changed during and after the cyclone.


North Queensland's cities Cairns and Townsville, escaped any major damage, other than large trees being uprooted and power lines brought down. The cyclone created much more severe damage in smaller towns like Cardwell, Tully, Mission Beach, Innisfail and other surrounding towns.

Houses had roofs torn off and others were completely flattened. Around 1,000 people reported major damage to their homes. The cyclone cut any power to more than 200,000 homes and even after a month some homes were still deemed unsafe to have power back. Agricultural production of banana and sugar cane crops were badly effected. Parks and forests were badly damaged and suffered form a massive tree and plant loss. Many animal lives were lost and endangered species of the cassowaries were badly effected after the cyclone.


You need Change over time and distribution when explaining any destructions that a cyclone has caused on a land because, you need to compare things before and after the time of the event to see what has been damaged and where any patterns occurred from the distraction of the cyclone. Location is also a good one to use because you need to know where exactly the affected areas were.

Banana Plantations

Cyclone Yasi hade a huge impact on Australian banana plantations. North Queensland grows 90% of Australia’s Banana crops. Majority of crops around North Queensland were flattened, in Australia three quarters of banana plantations were wiped out. Because of the shortages bananas went from around $2.75 kg to $12 - $15 kg. In Tully, where some of the biggest banana farms are, including the Mackay’s banana company were hit terribly. Banana farmers will be living off almost no income for quite a few months during their year long return to full production.

Banana industry faces bleak year after Cyclone Yasi

The Great Barrier Reef

Around 13 % of the Great Barrier Reef, from Cairns to Townsville, was exposed to the terrible Cyclone Yasi. In some areas of the reef there were serious damages while others only had minor damages. Areas around the reef that faced wind gusts up to 285 km were more seriously damaged. Some of the coral was broken and torn from the reef and others were only tipped on the side.


- Once again change over time is usable KGI’s to use when looking any effects the cyclone has had on the land. Change over time will be good to use to compare the differences and changes during and after the cyclone. Scale is also good because things might have effected area’s not only on a local scale but possibly even global.

After Yasi

Because of the effect on the banana plantations and sugar cane crops, prices have been affected all over Australia. Because Australia supplies 10% of the worlds sugar supply the international price of sugar rose 4%.

The Queensland government has also made a new policy with more strict regulations for building houses in cyclone prone areas. Things such as specific building materials, roof cladding, tie downs, bracing, stronger windows and doors have been put in place to minimize any damage if another cyclone were to hit.


Scale is a good KGI to use when talking about changes that have happened because, changes might have happened locally and or globally.