The latest cyclone update map as of 8am this morning.
The latest cyclone update map as of 8am this morning. BoM

CYCLONE DEBBIE: 5 tasks to do urgently

AUTHORITIES are urging Central Queenslanders to continue to complete these five tasks to prepare for Tropical Cyclone Debbie in the next few hours.

Everyone, including Rockhampton Regional Council, Isaac Regional Council, Livingstone Shire Council, BoM, the State Emergency Service, and Queensland Premier Anastasia Palaszcuk, are warning Central and North Queenslanders there is only hours left to prepare.

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Gale force winds are expected to begin between Ayr and Mackay this afternoon or tonight before possibly rapidly extending to St Lawrence, well before Cyclone Debbie reaches late tomorrow or early Tuesday morning.

Winds are expected to reach 260km/h, with Cyclone Debbie tipped to intensify into a Category 4 before making landfall.

>> Cyclone Debbie to intensify today, size of the eye unknown

The Queensland Government believes the following tasks could save your property or your life.

1. EITHER move wheelie bins inside or fill them up with water.

This will prevent them flying away.

BoM is warning of "destructive winds" in parts of Central Queensland, which will reach speeds of up to 260km/h.

Gale force winds are expected to begin this afternoon between Ayr and Mackay, with the possibility of extending south to St Lawrence tonight.

It goes without saying that you should also secure all other loose, outdoor items, such as pot plants.

2. FILL buckets and baths with fresh, clean water.

You may be isolated for a period of time in the aftermath of the cyclone, and water supplies could become restricted.

You will also need purification tablets to make the water drinkable.

3. PLACE outdoor, plastic furniture into a swimming pool.

If you have a swimming pool, place any appropriate belongings in it to stop them from flying around in high winds.

Gale force winds are expected to begin today, at least a day before Cyclone Debbie is expected to make landfall.

4. WRAP a tarpaulin or a blanket around your car.

If you can't move your car under shelter, or it is at all exposed, you should tightly tie a tarpaulin or blanket around your car.

Insurance premiums sky-rocket after cyclones, so anything you can do to stop your property being damaged by loose, flying objects could save you a lot of headaches and money in the aftermath.

5. IDENTIFY the most secure place in your house.

In the worst-case scenario that your home begins tearing apart, you need to quickly move to the strongest part of your home.

The Queensland Government suggests this could be a cellar, an internal room, a hallway or built-in wardrobe, under a bed, or even a strong table or bench.

In this scenario, you won't have long, so it's important everyone in your family is aware of the procedures if this occurs.