Typhoon Guchol charging towards Japan


High resolution image of typhoon Guchol in the western Pacific at 4:45 UTC June 18, 2012. From NASA Aqua satellite, MODIS instrument. See big. (NASA)

The Joint Typhoon Warning Center (JTWC) writes Guchol is in the early stages of winding down. Its eye has “filled in” (see image above) as destructive wind shear has increased. The forecast? Additional loss of strength says JTWC:

[THE STORM] WILL CONTINUE TO WEAKEN AS OCEAN PARAMETERS BECOME MORE UNFAVORABLE AND WESTERLY VERTICAL WIND SHEAR INCREASES.

Guchol is projected to make landfall near Kyoto Tuesday as it transitions from a tropical to a mid-latitude weather system. It will lash the east coast with large waves, torrential rain and strong winds up to 65 mph or so.

Heavy rain may cause the most problems over Japan.

“Heavy rain could lead to mudslides and flash flooding, especially in the mountains just west of Tokyo,” writes AccuWeather.

The Japan Meteorological Agency says up to 16 inches (40 centimeters) of rain is possible in 24 hours (source: the Agence France Presse).


Project path of tyhpoon Guchol with cone of uncertainty. (Joint Typhoon Warning Center)

The Stars and Stripes Pacific Storm Tracker blog said Guchol passed 81 miles east-southeast of Okinawa earlier today. The island “took a relatively light dusting” the blog reported, with a peak wind gust of 52 mph and 0.7” of rain.

Jason is currently the Washington Post’s weather editor. A native Washingtonian, Jason has been a weather enthusiast since age 10.

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