News & Media

24 January, 2019

Tropical Cyclone Riley

Please see below important information from the Harbour Master / PSO of Pilbara Ports Authority of Dampier in regards to Tropical Cyclone Riley



Good Morning All,


Port of Dampier – Tropical Cyclone Riley – Update 5


As per latest BOM forecast, the tropical cyclone Riley (ex-tropical low 12U) is currently located offshore northwest of Broome.


This tropical cyclone is likely to move in a West South Westerly direction and expected to reach a Category 3 intensity tropical cyclone on Saturday.


Environmental conditions are favourable for the system to accumulate an abundance of moisture along with it as it moves along the coast.


The Port of Dampier may experience Gale force winds and significant swell as a result of this Tropical Cyclone.



ALERT LEVEL: The Port of Dampier is currently at Cyclone Stage 2 - Prepare


This stage involves extensive communications and consultation between the Dampier Harbour Master, Port Terminal Operators, Port users and Pilots. Operational plans, sailing drafts, tidal requirements and intentions will be discussed and evaluated against possible response scenarios.





Date and time of issue:                            0900 WST Thursday 24th January 2019

Location of system:                                  Approximately 16.9S 120.8E

Forecast motion:                                      WSW @ 11 kts

Category:                                                 Cat 1 Tropical Cyclone Intensity

Maximum winds:                                      40 kts (gusting to 55kts)

Range and Bearing                                  322 nm X NE







The Port Of Dampier will move to Cyclone Stage 3 – Clear Port from 24th Jan 2019 / PM.

The intention is to have the port cleared by 25th Jan 2019 @ 1300LT.


The weather forecasts will continue to be monitored with further advice to be issued on 24th Jan 1600 hrs or earlier if there is a substantial change/escalation to the situation.



HARBOUR MASTERS DIRECTIVES for clearing the Port of Dampier is as follows:


24th January 2019




1800 Hours – All Anchorages

  • All vessels to have sailed and cleared all inner anchorages

  • All vessels to have sailed and cleared Western anchorages

25th January 2019




0200 Hours



  • Vessel’s from Rio Tinto, Dampier Salt, King Bay Supply Base and Toll terminals to be cleared

  • Bulk Liquid Berth and Dampier Cargo Wharf to be cleared   


1300 Hours

  • Vessel’s from Woodside terminals to be cleared


Vessel Masters shall ensure:

  • Vessel's engines and machinery are fully operational

  • Vessel's stability, trim, and propeller immersion are appropriate

  • Vessel's manning, stores and bunkers are adequate for departure

  • Preparations are made in accordance with their respective cyclone response plan

Terminal/berth operators  are to ensure that :

  • The response plan accounts for time required by vessel's to clear the port as directed by the Harbour Master.

  • The wharf areas are inspected for and cleared off / secured for any items that may have the potential to fall into the berth pockets or adjacent areas during periods of strong winds


Please see below important information from the Harbour Master of Pilbara Ports Authority of Port Hedland in regards to Cyclone Alert Stage 2 – System 12U – Prepare – Update 4.



Good evening,


The PPA – Port of Port Hedland cyclone response procedure has been activated. The Port of Port Hedland remains at Cyclone alert Stage 2 – PREPARE.


As of 1500 WST 23 January, the BoM has issued guidance forecast for Tropical Low 12U. The system is forecast to continue tracking in a South-Westerly direction and parallel to the Pilbara Coast over the coming days. The Tropical Low is expected to continue to intensify overnight and into tomorrow with a possibility of reaching Tropical Cyclone strength sometime tomorrow. The chance of a coastal crossing in the vicinity of Port Hedland continues to become less likely.


As the Port is now at Stage 2 PREPARE, the following early actions should be taken / have been implemented:

  • Regular communications with terminal operators and key service providers remain ongoing.

  • Terminals with ships alongside are to ensure vessel load plans are actively monitored.

  • Swell generated by the passing tropical system is expected to arrive at the Port over the next 36 to 48 hours and vessel draughts will need to be managed accordingly.

  • PPA will not approve any main engine immobilisation requests.

  • 2 x Jack Up Barges related to the Channel Marker Replacement Project are in the process of being de-mobilised  as per the contractor’s cyclone management plan.

  • Terminal cyclone plans should be activated consistent with PPA expectations.

The BoM guidance track map as of 1500 WST 23 January is attached for information. PPA will continue to monitor the Tropical Low with the next update to be provided PM 24 January or earlier if required.