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Published on : Friday, July 3, 2015
AccuWeather reports the western Pacific Ocean has come alive with two tropical systems and another potentially in the works. Strengthening Typhoon Chan-hom is on track to become the most violent and will threaten Guam this weekend. The corridor from Shanghai to Tokyo could face impacts next week.
Following the development of Tropical Depression 10W east of the Philippines, Chan-hom strengthened into a typhoon Thursday night local time (midday Thursday EDT) southeast of Guam.
While Chan-hom has been tracking to the southwest, a turn more toward the northwest is soon expected with an eventual track just north of Guam and through the Northern Mariana Islands.
The strength of Chan-hom will likely be equal to that of a Category 2 hurricane when its center makes its closest approach to Guam and barrels through the Northern Mariana Islands Saturday night. The typhoon’s outer rain bands will arrive as soon as Friday.
Residents of Guam and the Northern Mariana Islands should prepare for flooding rain, damaging winds and life-threatening surf.
“Rainfall amounts will average 150 to 250 mm (6 to 10 inches) with locally higher amounts before Chan-hom moves away Sunday into Monday,” stated AccuWeather Meteorologist Rob Richards.
Sustained winds during the height of the typhoon will howl between 95 and 130 kph (60 and 80 mph). Communities that take a direct hit from Chan-hom’s center will face winds of 130 to 160 kph (80 to 100 mph) with gusts to 195 kph (120 mph).
AccuWeather meteorologists expect a continued track to the northwest next week as the strengthening typhoon moves over the open Pacific Ocean between Guam and Japan.
The combination of very warm ocean waters and relatively low wind shear, which can shred apart tropical cyclones if strong enough, will provide an ideal environment for Chan-hom strengthen with the potential for rapid intensification into a super typhoon early next week.
Strengthening into a very large and dangerous cyclone is expected regardless of whether or not super typhoon status is reached.
Areas from coastal eastern China to South Korea and Japan could endure impacts from from Chan-hom late next week depending on the exact track of the cyclone.
Due to the large size and expected strengthening, this typhoon will be capable of producing life-threatening conditions within several hundred kilometers (miles) of its track.
Anyone with interests from Shanghai to Tokyo, as well as the Ryukyu Islands, should closely monitor this typhoon over the next week as further information on exact impacts become available.