Typhoon Neoguri hits Japan causing US base to shut down and transport chaos
One fisherman is said to be missing after his boat was caught in rough seas caused by the typhoon
Tuesday 08 July 2014
A powerful typhoon is pummelling the southern Japanese islands of Okinawa, paralysing transport and prompting US forces based there to cancel all outdoor activity.
The Okinawa government has reported that four people were injured, one an 83-year-old woman who suffered a head injury. A man was reported missing from a fishing boat in rough seas off Kyushu, to the north.
One of the strongest and biggest typhoons to hit during Japan's summer months, Typhoon Neoguri was packing sustained winds of 194 kilometers (120 miles) per hour and gusts up to 240 kph (148 mph), theJapan Meteorological Agency said.
Local airports were closed and some 550,000 people were advised to evacuate their homes, though most remained put, taking refuge from the destructive winds, waves up to 14 meters (46 feet) high and storm surges that were set to intensify as the storm passed the main island of Okinawa in the evening.
Most of the 50,000 U.S. troops in Japan are based in Okinawa, the location of several bases including Kadena, the biggest U.S. air base in Asia. An advisory on its website said the storm was at a level for which all outdoor activity was prohibited.
Television footage showed buildings and trees toppled as winds picked up in the Okinawan capital of Naha.
"Please take refuge as early as possible," said Keiji Furuya, chairman of the National Public Safety Commission.
A wooden house collapsed due to strong winds caused by Typhoon Neoguri in Naha, on Japan's southern island of Okinawa
Since typhoons track along Japan's coasts, often veering onshore every summer, the country is relatively well prepared. Much greater damage is likely from torrential rains if the typhoon hits land as expected on Thursday or Friday and moves across the Japanese archipelago.
The storm was moving slowly and diminishing in intensity, but its wide area and slow movement could add to the potential damage, weather forecasters said.
Authorities in China and Taiwan also warned ships to stay clear of the storm.
People had to try and fight the storm which is thought to be one of Japan's strongest of the summer so far
Forecasts show the storm tracking toward Kyushu island and then across Japan's main island of Honshu. It is forecast to lose more of its power over land, but much of the damage from such storms comes from downpours that cause landslides and flooding. Such risks are elevated by the storm's timing, on the tail end of Japan's summer rainy season.
The Philippines, which suffered the strongest typhoon to ever hit land when Haiyan struck six months ago, was spared the ferocious winds of Neoguri. The storm did not make land fall and remained about 480 kilometers (300 miles) east of the northernmost province of Batanes, when it roared past on Sunday.
The typhoon did intensify the country's southwest monsoon, dumping heavy rains on some western Philippine provinces.
Neoguri is a Korean word meaning "raccoon dog," a knee-high animal that looks like a cross between a dog and a raccoon but is a separate species common in East Asia.
- 1 President of Argentina adopts Jewish godson to 'stop him turning into a werewolf'
- 2 ALS ice bucket challenge co-founder Corey Griffin drowns, aged 27
- 3 The 'Black Museum': After 150 years, public set to see exhibits from police’s grisly crime museum
- 4 AirAsia flight QZ8501 missing: Plane carrying 162 passengers from Indonesia to Singapore disappears over Java Sea
- 5 Naomi Wolf reacts to Isis 'conspiracy theories' critism after she questions whether beheading videos are real
President of Argentina adopts Jewish godson to 'stop him turning into a werewolf'
Exclusive: Abusers using spyware apps to monitor partners reaches 'epidemic proportions'
ALS ice bucket challenge co-founder Corey Griffin drowns, aged 27
UK weather: Warning for more snow and ice as freezing temperatures and gales hit Britain
Stoke-on-Trent becomes first British city to be classified as 'disaster resilient' by the United Nations
British actor Idris Elba cannot star as James Bond because he is black, says shock jock Rush Limbaugh
Ukip member gets into Christmas spirit with Union Flag plea to Santa 'for our country back'
Germany anti-Islam protests: 17,000 march on Dresden against 'Islamification of the West'
Immigrants make UK racist, says Ukip councillor Trevor Shonk
Millions of Britons struggling to feed themselves and facing malnourishment
Nigel Farage: Ukip leader named 'Briton of the year' by The Times
£20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Panel Wireman required for small electro...
£25000 - £27000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An SME based in East Cheshire, ...
£18000 - £22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Do you have previous experience...
£16000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...