Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Typhoon Phanfone Update #3

Issued (05 UTC) 1pm PhT 100114

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Phanfone continues to quickly intensify today and has been upgraded to a Typhoon by the JTWC. The system was last located approximately 380km northwest of Saipan or about 480km north northwest of Guam. Maximum sustained winds are now at 120kph with gusts of up to 150kph. Typhoon Phanfone is moving west northwestward at 20kph.

IR Image from NRLMRY

Latest satellite image shows a rapidly developing cyclone with a small but organized central dense overcast. Strong convective bands continue to wrap around the center. Furthermore, outflow remains excellent especially along the western and southern portions of the circulation. Environmental conditions across the Philippine Sea are highly favorable and should help Phanfone continue its quick intensification.

Forecast Track (NOT OFFICIAL!)

There have been some important changes with the forecasts from the weather computer models that we use. Most of them have shifted west and are now positioned much closer to Japan. In response, we have shifted our forecast track slightly to the west and closely resembles the Japan Meteorological Agency's forecast track.

We are expecting Phanfone to continue moving generally northwestward over the next few days, intensifying along the way. It may reach a peak intensity of up to Category 4 strength by the weekend. Uncertainty remains regarding the eventual track and models are virtually split on this. One camp shows a westward track towards Okinawa, while the other camp shows a recurve towards Mainland Japan. Whatever the case may be, we urge everyone from Taiwan to Okinawa all the way to Mainland Japan to closely pay attention to the progress and development of Typhoon Phanfone.

We'll have anther update tomorrow.

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