Tropical Cyclone Sigma passed Townsville to the North east. Rain totalling 510 mm fell during the cyclone resulting in enormous seas and substantial flooding. Bar at Townsville dropped to 991 hPa. 10 vessels were wrecked in the harbour, fences were laid flat and verandahs stripped off houses. Trees 6 feet in circumference were blown down. Floods and storm surge flooded the lower parts of Townsville with over 1.8 m of water. 3 miles of suburbs became an inland sea with large waves breaking on the banks. Seventeen people drowned as a result and one sailor was killed.

In Townsville, many hundreds of houses were wrecked, and there was consequently a great demand for carpenters and plumbers. The bridge over Ross Creek collapsed. Trees 6 feet in circumference were blown down. The breakwaters in the harbour were badly damage by the seas, and the baths completely swept away. The Cape Cleveland Light keeper's house was unroofed and the boat-shed was damaged. The School of Arts was wrecked, the Imperial and Criterion Hotels were unroofed, and hardly a house has escaped damage.

The cyclone then moved down the coast towards Rockhampton. Rainfall from effects of the cyclone close to the coast generated very heavy rain overland. There were Twenty three deaths and three missing in Townsville and Central Queensland.

Rockhampton Regional Council in partnership with the Queensland a…

Cylone Sigma 1896 - track

Cyclone Sigma 1896: Central QLD rainfall