Former Tropical Cyclone Ellie was causing flooding in parts of Western Australia on Wednesday. At 7:00 a.m. EST on Wednesday the center of former Tropical Cyclone Ellie was located at latitude 17.8°S and longitude 123.3°E which put it about 70 miles (110 km) east of Broome, Australia. Ellie was moving toward the west at 3 m.p.h. (5 km/h). The maximum sustained wind speed was 40 m.p.h. (65 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 50 m.p.h. (80 km/h). The minimum surface pressure was 990 mb.
Former Tropical Cyclone Ellie continued to drop heavy rain over parts of Western Australia on Wednesday and major flooding was occurring along the Fitzroy River. Ellie dropped between 5.1 to 20.4 inches (200 to 800 mm) of rain over the Kimberley region during the past seven days. Major flooding was occurring at Fitzroy Crossing where the water level reached 52 feet (15.81 m). The Fitzroy River at Noonkanbah was 40 feet (12.31 m) and moderate flooding was occurring. The Fitzroy River was at 24 feet (7.26 m) at Willare and minor flooding was occurring.
Former Tropical Cyclone Ellie was also bringing gusty winds to parts of Western Australia. A weather station at Broome Port reported a sustained wind speed of 39 m.p.h. (63 km/h) and a gust of 49 m.p.h. (74 km/h). The weather station at Broome Port reported a wind gust of 59 m.p.h. (95 km/h) a few hours ago. A weather station in Derby reported a sustained wind speed of 28 m.p.h. (46 km/h) and a wind gust of 32 m.p.h. (52 km/h). The weather station in Derby reported a wind gust of 55 m.p.h. (89 km/h) a few hours ago.
The circulation around former Tropical Cyclone Ellie was still very well organized. The strongest winds were occurring in bands of thunderstorms over water and near the coast of Western Australia. Thunderstorms were occurring in bands in the southern and western sides of Ellie’s circulation. Bands in the northern and eastern sides of the circulation consisted primarily of showers and lower clouds. Storms near the center of Ellie generated upper level divergence that pumped mass away from the former tropical cyclone. The removal of mass allowed the surface pressure to remain near 990 mb even though the center of circulation was over land.
Former Tropical Cyclone Ellie is likely to remain nearly stationary near Broome during the next 24 hours. The bands of thunderstorms are likely to continue to drop locally heavy rain over parts of Western Australia. A Major Flood Warning remains in effect for the Fitzroy River. A Flood Warning is in effect for the West Kimberley District. A Flood Watch is in effect for the Sandy Desert.
Former Tropical Cyclone Ellie is likely to maintain its intensity during the next 24 hours. About half of Ellie’s circulation will be over over water where the Sea Surface Temperatures are near 29˚C. It will be under the axis of an upper level ridge over northern Australia. The upper level winds are weak near the axis of the ridge and there will be little vertical wind shear. Former Tropical Cyclone Ellie is forecast to move toward the east-southeast later this week. Ellie is likely to weaken when the entire circulation moves back over land.