Lionrock has intensified in to a Typhoon Wednesday to the east of Amami in the Southern Japanese islands. This storm has been a rather interesting one to watch, forming first south of Tokyo and then riding the monsoonal gyre that has been in place south east along the coast of Honshu towards Okinawa.
Now after its odd journey it has decided to take a break and linger east of Okinawa for the time being. The one location that will take a direct hit though is the Daito islands part of Okinawa prefecture. The island is built for typhoons and has a population of only 2,100 people. But still typhoon strength winds from the center of this storm will still be enough to cause damage and knock out power to the isolated islands.
The track is still uncertain though. What this means is that at this time a lack of steering flow is working on the storm. To the north we have high pressure dominating Japan. To the east the monsoonal gyre has let go of its grip somewhat on Lionrock. So for now there is no decided steering dynamic sending it one way or the other.
What is likely?
For the storm to linger near Okinawa bringing tropical storm gust to the island over the coming days before heading north prior to the weekend as a mid-lattitude trough picks it up engaging a stronger flow.
Models including GFS, ECMWF and JMA all have high confidence on this solution. The GFS and JMA specifically taking a very strong typhoon right over the Tokyo Metro Area Monday night in to Tuesday.
Still time will tell on that, as it is nearly a week away. People from Okinawa to Tokyo though should continue to watch the track of this storm and how it does eventually develop.