SURFERS PARADISE BEACH CLOSES AS CYCLONE OMA APPROACHES

Hazardous surf warnings have been issued for stretches of the Queensland coast, as Cyclone Oma threatens to smash the region.

High tides and big swells have already hit the south-east coast, and coastal activities will become increasingly dangerous.

Rock fishing, boating and swimming are being discouraged.

Surfers Paradise beach has been closed because of strong currents and people are being urged not to enter the water.

Rain and winds are expected to impact the coast from the Gold Coast north to Fraser Island.

Oma was upgraded to Category 3 over the weekend, as winds of 110km/h gusted as high as 140km/h and lashed Vanuatu.