Emergency warnings indicate that Typhoon Neoguri is expected to develop into a “once in decades”-strong storm by Tuesday. Japan’s weather agency predicted that while it will not be as strong as Typhoon Haiyan, which killed thousands in the Philippines last year, Neoguri’s “super-typhoon” status means that maximum precautions must be taken against the storm by the people in and around the Okinawa island chain. The government has urged those in the affected areas to evacuate early, and has issued a high seas warning, forcing fishermen to haul in their boats.
The most recent significant wave height of the typhoon was over 12 metres, and the Japan Meteorological Agency warned of “record-breaking” winds as well. The JMA warned: “This is an extraordinary situation, where a grave danger is approaching”.
Okinawa is host to three-quarters of all US military facilities in Japan, and the nearby island of Kyushu is home to two nuclear plants, whose operations are being halted to comply with current national safety policy. The previously destroyed nuclear plant, Fukushima Daiichi, is on the other side of the country and will not be further affected. Keiji Furuya, the state minister in charge of Disaster Management, has cancelled a trip to the US.
NOAA Satellites (@NOAASatellites) July 7, 2014