(ROUGH CUT ONLY - NO REPORTER NARRATION)
A powerful cyclone heading for Port Hedland in Australia intensified and was set to make landfall late on Wednesday (February 27).
Cyclone Rusty early on Wednesday strengthened to a Category 4 storm, on a scale of 1 to 5. The Australian Bureau of Meteorology predicts the storm will come ashore just to the east of Port Hedland.
"Already we've seen significant rainfall. Rainfall totals this morning were up around 180 millimetres (seven inches) in places. We do expect to see further heavy rainfalls as the system moves south," Mike Bergin, regional director at the bureau, said.
Weather warnings extend as far as 500 kilometres (310 miles) inland. Hardest-hit areas could receive up to 600 millimetres (two feet) of rain in 24 hours, the bureau said.
Australia braces for powerful cyclone (0:33)
Feb. 27 - Cyclone Rusty intensifies to a Category 4 storm as it barrels towards Port Hedland, Australia. Rough Cut (no reporter narration). ( Transcript )