Macquarie Island bears brunt of storm

2 June 2003

Wild weather has hit Macquarie Island eroding parts of the isthmus and causing damage to some buildings, while people on the island remain safe.

The Australian Antarctic Division's Manager Operations Kim Pitt said that the impact on Macquarie Island was caused by a combination of strong winds and the tide.

"Winds gusting up to 170 kph hit the island at high tide on Saturday night.

"At this stage, damage to buildings appears to be superficial. This is something our people there have been checking since the storm occurred and certainly at this stage it seems to be no more than superficial.

"There is some litter about. When a storm like this hits things are tossed around so our priority has been to ensure the cleanup and that is underway now."

Mr Pitt stressed that safety for workers was not an issue and that work today would ensure that continued to be the case.

"Obviously, we have not had the opportunity to check other parts of Macquarie Island, but from what we can ascertain around the site of our station the welfare of animals is not an issue either."

It is expected that Macquarie Island will experience more extreme weather tomorrow.