Typhoon Sanba (Bagyong Karen) is now making landfall along the northern side of Okinawa. The eye is currently passing just east of Naha and Kadena Air Base. Typhoon Sanba has slightly weakened in the past 6 hours with maximum sustained winds now down to 195kph with gusts of up to 240kph. Sanba is moving north northwestward at 20kph.
IR Image from NRLMRY
Latest satellite image shows the well-defined eye of Sanba moving into Okinawa. The eye has remained well-developed despite the erosion along the northwestern side of the system. Strong convection still surrounds the eye, particularly along the eastern and southern peripheries of the eyewall. Conditions are slowly becoming hostile in this region which should lead to increase weakening later today. But for now though, Sanba remains a full-fledged Category 3 Typhoon.
Radar from JMA
Latest radar from Okinawa clearly shows the eye of Sanba moving into Okinawa. The eye is passing over Miyagijima, Higashi, and Nago. Since Sanba is moving east of Naha and Kadena, it will be sparing these areas from the strongest winds. Right now, most stations are reporting winds of around 80 to 90kph sustained with gusts of up to 140kph. We haven't seen any reports of Typhoon sustained just yet, though. For more radar images, warnings, and forecasts from Japan, please click HERE (JMA)
Damaging winds will continue for at least the next 3 hours. The strongest winds will be located along the eastern side of the eye. Along with the winds, heavy rains will continue for the next 6 hours and could amount to as much as 300mm in some places.
Typhoon Sanba will continue weakening throughout today as wind shear starts to increase along with the cooler waters of the East China Sea. It is still forecast to make landfall along the south coast of South Korea, perhaps within 100km west of Busan, by early tomorrow morning (Monday). Depending on the rate of weakening in the next 12 hours, Sanba could make landfall as a Category 1 Typhoon.
We'll have another update later today. If you have any storm images or videos, please share them with us at email@example.com
Issued (21 UTC) 5am PhT 091612