Jim Andrews

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Cyclone Freda May Target New Caledonia

December 31, 2012; 9:50 AM ET

Tropical Cyclone Freda is on a path the could bring torrential rain and strong winds over New Caledonia late in the week.

The powerful cyclone, located over the Coral Sea south of the Solomon Islands, held highest sustained winds of 105 knots (about 130 mph) as of Monday morning, local time, the Joint Typhoon Warning Center (JTWC) website said.

The JTWC forecast to aim southward through Tuesday night before veering southeastward on Wednesday. Significant weakening of the storm was also forecast.

Thursday and Friday, the weakening cyclone could track near enough to the island of New Caledonia to trigger excessive rain and flooding, as well as strong winds.

It is unclear whether Freda takes an alternate path towards the west, leading to its approach to the east coast of Australia before the end of the week.


Color-enhanced infrared satellite imagery shows Tropical Cyclone Freda as of 13:30 UTC (23:30 Australian EST) Monday, Dec. 31, 2012. The position of Freda is over the Coral Sea, both northwest of New Caledonia and south of the Solomon Islands. At the time, the location was less than 450 miles northwest of Noumea, New Caledonia, or about 600 miles south of Honiara, Solomon Islands (Australian Bureau of Meteorology).

The views expressed are those of the author and not necessarily those of AccuWeather, Inc. or AccuWeather.com

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