CWB issues sea warning for super typhoon
The China Post news staff with CNATAIPEI, Taiwan -- The Central Weather Bureau (CWB) last night upgraded Typhoon Usagi from a medium-strength storm to a super typhoon.
September 20, 2013, 12:21 am TWN
The bureau also issued a sea warning as Usagi continued to grow in strength and accelerate toward Taiwan.
The bureau was originally scheduled to issue a sea warning early today.
As of 8 a.m. yesterday, Usagi was situated some 990 km southeast of the southernmost tip of Taiwan and moving briskly in a west-northwesterly direction at 14 to 18 kph, packing maximum sustained winds of 144 kph with gusts of up to 180 kph, according to the bureau.
Typhoon Usagi is bringing winds rated at level 7 on the Beaufort scale, with its diameter spanning 220 km.
On its current path, Usagi will continue its approach toward Southern Taiwan and could make landfall on the Hengchun Peninsula by Saturday evening, the CWB stated in an alert to residents in southern and southeastern parts of the country.
A land warning is likely to be issued by noon today for Usagi, the 19th storm of the 2013 Pacific typhoon season, the weather bureau said.
Yesterday marked the beginning of the Mid-Autumn Festival, with mild weather, cooler temperatures and light drizzle reported throughout Taiwan.
The weather, however, may turn inclement as Usagi approaches and possibly makes landfall. Temperatures could hit a low of 23 to 26 degrees Celsius during evening and early morning hours in Northern Taiwan.
The CWB warned that northeastern and east Taiwan may be the first regions to feel the effects of the typhoon, and advised residents to be prepared for heavy downpours, particularly in mountainous regions. Meanwhile, the CWB forecast short bursts of thundershowers in Southern and Central Taiwan during Usagi's approach.
With many people enjoyed the four-day festival holiday, the bureau urged the public to be mindful of conditions while traveling and to stay updated as the typhoon nears Taiwan.
The Mid-Autumn Festival is an important occasion in Taiwan and Greater China, with many people barbecuing outdoors and moon gazing in celebration; however, rain from typhoons has dashed revelries for six out of the past 10 years.
In 1969, 1986, 1991, 2008 and 2009, land warnings were issued on the day of the Mid-Autumn Festival, with typhoons wreaking significant damage.
This graphic made using infrared data shows Typhoon Usagi's proximity to Taiwan at 8 p.m. last night. Usagi currently has a diameter of 220 km and is on a trajectory for Taiwan, ...
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