Anna Plains caught in eye of the storm

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Liam CroyCountryman
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Anna Plains copped the full force of category two tropical cyclone Kelvin.
Camera IconAnna Plains copped the full force of category two tropical cyclone Kelvin. Credit: Twitter/David Stoate

As the rain eased and the wind died down, David Stoate thought he might have seen the worst of tropical cyclone Kelvin.

Either that or he was getting a reprieve as the eye of the storm passed over Anna Plains Station 270km south-west of Broome last week.

The truth became clear soon enough.

“It was about 6.30am to 7.30am when the eye went over,” Mr Stoate said. “It was windy as anything and then it was dead calm.

“It was definitely eerie. It gave me a chance to go and assess the damage a bit and clean up. After the eye went over, that’s certainly when it was at its strongest.

“Most of the damage happened in the next three hours.”

Damage at Anna Plains.
Camera IconDamage at Anna Plains. Credit: Twitter / David Stoate

Mr Stoate huddled in his homestead with his wife Helen, elderly father John and staff members.

All he could do was record a few videos as the cyclone ripped roofs of buildings and uprooted trees.

Luckily, the main homestead was made of sterner stuff.

“We’ve been here 12 years but that’s the first time I’ve had a direct hit,” he said.

“I think the change in wind direction after the eye contributed to a lot of the damage.”

He has several other structures — and 20,000 cattle — on his station which he is yet to check on.

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