Saturday, December 1, 2012

Typhoon Bopha Update #13

Typhoon Bopha has entered another round of intensification overnight and is now nearing Super Typhoon strength. The storm was last located approximately 410km east southeast of Palau or about 390km south of Yap. Maximum sustained winds are now up to 230kph with gusts of up to 275kph. Typhoon Bopha is currently moving west northwestward at 20kph.

Typhoon Warning is up for Palau while a Typhoon Watch has been issued for Yap. This is a dangerous storm, if you are in these areas, you should have prepared by now! Always listen to local news and radio for the latest information from your local officials. For the latest warnings from the National Weather Service, please click HERE

IR Image from NRLMRY

Latest satellite image shows that the pinhole eye of Bopha has cleared overnight and is currently surrounded by a thick ring of convective activity. Satellite analysis indicate that Bopha may actually be a Category 5 as of right now although we'll have to wait for the official words from JTWC/NWS to confirm. Outer rain bands are not impacting Palau yet although light rain showers have already moved across Yap last night.

Stormy conditions for Palau are expected to occur beginning later this afternoon with the worst conditions expected later this evening (Sunday), midnight, and will last into early Monday morning. Bopha is forecast to pass just south of Koror which will actually put the worst winds into the islands of Palau. Winds of up to 200kph are possible along the southernmost areas and in coastal areas. Do not underestimate the strength of these winds as they can really be destructive! Aside from the winds, storm surge and rainfall amounts of up to 250mm are also possible.

As for the Philippines, forecast tracks remain largely unchanged and the consensus is still showing a track possibly towards Northern Mindanao by early Tuesday morning. Favorable conditions are forecast to persist across the track so we expect Bopha to at least maintain a strong typhoon intensity before landfall. Just like in Palau, we urge everyone here to start preparing especially if you are near the coast and mountainous areas. Always coordinate with the local officials for any warnings and special instructions for your locale.

We'll have another update later this afternoon.
Issued (2330 UTC) 730am PhT 120212

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