Japan Warns ‘Violent Typhoon’ Could Hit on Sunday

Half of Japan was under weather advisories on Saturday night as a “violent typhoon” named Nanmadol edged toward the country’s south, with landfall expected Sunday afternoon.

The storm was likely to traverse almost the entire length of Japan after making landfall, bringing with it “heavy rain, strong winds and high waves,” according to the Japan Meteorological Agency.

Nanmadol was about 280 miles east of Okinawa, a southern Japanese archipelago, on Saturday afternoon, with maximum sustained winds of about 123 miles per hour near its center and peak gusts reaching 168 m.p.h.

The agency classified the storm as a “violent typhoon,” its most severe category of storm based on wind speeds. The Joint Typhoon Warning Center, a U.S. military command in Hawaii, also issued a storm advisory, designating Nanmadol a “super typhoon” this week.

As well as the weather advisories across Japan, parts of Kyushu, the southernmost of the country’s four main islands, were under evacuation orders, the meteorological agency said. Expecting heavy rain, flooding and landslides, airlines grounded flights and the authorities suspended train service in many parts of Japan, according to NHK, the country’s public broadcaster.

After passing over Okinawa, Nanmadol is expected to weaken and become a “very strong typhoon” by the time it reaches mainland Japan, the meteorological agency said. Maximum winds of 112 m.p.h. were anticipated at that point, it said.

The storm is projected to curve northeastward and trace almost the entire length of the main islands that make up Japan. Nearly the entire country was in the storm warning area designated by the agency.

Map: Tracking Typhoon Nanmadol

A map showing the storm’s path as it heads toward Japan.

The storm will probably head back to sea on Wednesday or Thursday, according to the meteorological agency. Forecasters in South Korea said that it could also affect southern parts of the country that were battered by Typhoon Hinnamnor two weeks ago.

The term typhoon, like hurricane and cyclone, refers to tropical cyclones. Typhoons develop in the northwestern Pacific and usually affect Asia. Hurricanes form in the North Atlantic, the northeastern Pacific, the Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico.

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