Seven, Nine’s crazy cyclone battle
IT SEEMS like every reporter on Australian television is in Queensland today to cover Cyclone Debbie.
In the quest to bring us the news, they're battling fierce winds, ever-changing conditions - and sometimes, locals who just won't play ball.
One Nine reporter found this out the hard way, interviewing 89-year-old Ayr resident Ruth Western live on the Today show this morning.
Sat on her balcony some 119km from Bowen, where the cyclone is expected to make landfall, Western said that in her 89 years living in Ayr, she'd seen quite a few cyclones in her time.
"In terms of where Cyclone Debbie stacks up for you - the build up and the preparations happening here in Ayr - how serious do you think this cyclone is?" the reporter asked, his tone grave.
"Well I don't think it's very serious to us. Down further it would be but ... we're not worried, are we darl?"
"Nup, not at all," said the woman standing by Ms Western.
The reporter asked what the day ahead would hold.
"Nothing," said Ruth, letting out a long laugh. "An easy day!"
Ruth Western might be utterly chill, but the reporters on the ground in Queensland aren't - seemingly locked in a battle to see who can best brave the elements:
Reporters' drive to brave the elements in search of dramatic footage doesn't always go down well with authorities and weather experts, who spend their time pleading with locals to stay indoors as the conditions worsen.
Bowen resident and former mayor of the region Mike Brunker said the message was for people to stay inside - but all morning he'd been watching TV reporters standing out in the wind and rain.
"It's madness," he said.