BOM defended amid criticism of emergency alerts

Authorities are expressing support for the Bureau of Meteorology which has been copping criticism in the wake of ex-tropical cyclone Jasper, with some north Queensland residents saying warnings came too late.

In the Cairns suburb of Holloways Beach, some residents reported only receiving a major flood warning on Sunday morning after already being isolated.

The bureau also released an update on Saturday morning suggesting the intensity of the rainfall was easing along the coast, dropping those areas out of its severe weather warning.

Emergency Management minister Murray Watt says warning systems will continue to be refined after the major floods.

"Whenever we have a disaster of this magnitude we always review it, we always seek to improve and if there are any improvements to be made then we will do that," he said.

Mr Watt said the Federal Government is currently working on a new federal emergency message warning system following similar complaints about disaster alerts during the south-east Queensland and northern NSW floods in 2022. 

The new system is expected to be available from the end of 2024. 

"This was an incredibly unpredictable weather system and I do have confidence that all the authorities, federal, state and local acted as quickly as they could with the best information that they could," Mr Watt said.

Meteorologist Sue Oates said the bureau had been alerting residents well before ex-tropical cyclone Jasper made landfall, and is continuing to issue warnings as the disaster unfolds.

"In this event, which has been a prolonged event we've been providing forecasts and warnings to the Australian public for more than eight days out from tropical cyclone Jasper's coastal crossing," she said.

Queensland Premier Steven Miles has also come to the bureau's defence. 

He said the bureau had done the best it could based on the information they had.  

"No modelling , no science can be perfect," he told ABC Radio.

"It escalated very, very quickly and very, very suddenly, it also flooded a lot of homes that wouldn't normally flood."

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