Cyclone Ita could rain on our harbour festival parade

IT may be about to rain on Gladstone's parade, with the Rockhampton Bureau of Meteorology saying Gladstone could experience 50-100mm of rainfall in 48 hours between Sunday and Monday - just in time for Harbour Festival.

Rockhampton BOM spokesman Brendan Bradford said Capricornia could expect rain areas to develop from Sunday as Cyclone Ita broke down and moved south along the coast.

Mr Bradford said the system was still unpredictable at this stage, and it hwas hard to tell whether the system would track inland or offshore.

But he believed it would decrease in strength as it moved over land.

He said Capricornia could also expect strong winds to develop on Monday, with modelling indicating winds up to 30 knots or more may be experienced along the coast.

Tropical Cyclone Ita has been downgraded to a category-two cyclone.

The bureau said Ita was weakening as it moved south south-west inland from Cooktown after having crossed the coast near Cape Flattery at 10pm on Friday.

There have been reports that high winds tore the roofs off the James Cook Museum and a house in Cooktown.

Power lines had been brought down and there was damage to a number of properties.

The cyclone crossed Cape Flattery with destructive winds to 230km/h near the core and gales extending out to 185 kilometres from the centre. More here.