Japan on alert for pair of tropical systems

Fresh on the heels of Typhoon Matmo, portions of Eastern Asia will need to keep an eye on a developing cyclone currently spinning in the Western Pacific Ocean.

Japan on alert for pair of tropical systems

Fresh on the heels of Typhoon Matmo, portions of Eastern Asia will need to keep an eye on a developing cyclone currently spinning in the Western Pacific Ocean.

This large area of low pressure currently sits several hundred miles south of Okinawa, Japan, and east of the northern Philippines producing widespread showers and thunderstorms along with gusty winds.

Showers and thunderstorms remain disorganized around this large area of low pressure, preventing development into a named cyclone at this time.

This feature is currently over an area of very warm water; however, moderate easterly wind shear combined with the large size of the unsettled weather has hampered development thus far.

Wind shear is expected to weaken later this week as the low moves northwest, allowing further development and strengthening as it moves toward Taiwan and the Ryukyu Islands of Japan.

Anyone living in or visiting areas from Taiwan, through eastern China and the Ryukyu Islands of Japan should closely monitor this potential cyclone as heavy rain and locally damaging winds are possible later this week.

Conditions will deteriorate across the Ryukyu Islands Wednesday night into Thursday, with some outer rain bands potentially reaching northern and eastern Taiwan during this time as well.

Areas from eastern China into South Korea and southern Japan need to be on alert for worsening weather with locally heavy rain and gusty winds possible from Friday into the weekend.

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Current forecasts are for the developing cyclone to move northwest, tracking between Taiwan and Okinawa from Thursday into Friday before advancing farther northwest over the weekend.

While the future intensity of cyclone remains unclear due to the amount of wind shear it will encounter along its northwest track, heavy rainfall and flooding are expected regardless of strength.

With the status of this developing complex subject to change, please be sure to check with the West Pacific Typhoon and Tropical Storm Center for the latest information.

Another area of concern is Tropical Storm Halong which continues to strengthen to the east of Guam. A general west to northwest track of this storm will bring heavy rain and strong winds to Guam Tuesday night, Wednesday and Wednesday night, local time.

Rainfall of 100-200 mm (4-8 inches) with locally higher amounts could lead to flooding across Guam and the surrounding Mariana Islands just to the north. Winds over 110 kph (70 mph) may cause some power outages and some instances of structural damage.

Further strengthening is expected as the storm moves northwestward, and it could reach typhoon strength before moving through the Mariana Islands just north of Guam.

In the longer range, this cyclone could target Japan with another round of heavy rain and damaging winds next week.

As this cyclone tracks northward late this week and early next week, the potential exists for rapid strengthening and a Halong could become a very dangerous and powerful typhoon prior to reaching Japan.

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