Several cyclones will form in northern Australia each year, however they may not all make landfall (cross the coast) or impact the Cairns area.
Active cyclones in the broader region may also bring periods of strong winds, heavy rain and flash flooding to Cairns. The most challenging impact of cyclones for water and wastewater infrastructure is the loss of telecommunications resulting in the inability to remotely control treatment processes.
With the impact of climate change, Cairns is predicted to have less frequent but more intense cyclones, and so preparing for cyclones is a core business continuity requirement for the Council.
This case study is from Towards Resilience: Climate change and the urban water industry in Australia and New Zealand.