U.S. Declares Disaster as Typhoon Passes North of Saipan

Evarado Alatorre
Octubre 10, 2019

As of Monday morning local time, Typhoon Hagibis was looming near the Northern Marianas Islands.

The exceptionally small, tight eye is reminiscent of extreme hurricane Patricia in 2015 - the record holder for the strongest sustained winds for a tropical cyclone, at 345 km/h (215 mph).

"The wind speed increased by 100 mph in only 24 hours", said CNN meteorologist Brandon Miller.

CNN reported the storm's intensification happened three times faster than what meteorologists would normally consider being "rapid intensification".

#Hagibis has intensified by 90 mph in 18 hours - from a tropical storm to a #supertyphoon.

A typhoon and a hurricane are precisely the same weather phenomenon - a tropical cyclone, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

"Here's a fresh Himawari8 infrared animation of Super Typhoon Hagibis, north [of] Guam", the NOAA public affairs team said on Twitter.

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The areas are expected to see coastal flooding, according to the Weather Channel.

Hagibis' relatively small rotation has been fuelled by warm ocean water and winds that exit its core.

The Pacific Daily News reports the eye of Typhoon Hagibis passed over Anatahan Island, about 80 miles (130 miles) north of Saipan, early Tuesday.

This would be the equivalent of a Category 4 Atlantic hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Wind Scale.

Rainfall of over 250 millimeters (nearly 10 inches) is possible for some locations in south-central Japan. The Irish rugby team is set to face off against the Japanese team in the city of Fukuoka on the island of Kyushu this Saturday, according to the Guardian, but may have to move the location of the game because the island is now in the path of the typhoon.

Hagibis is still five days away from impacting Japan.

As of 9 a.m. on October 8, the typhoon was moving west-northwest off the Mariana Islands at 25 kph, according to the agency.

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