Typhoon Haima continues to intensify this morning upgrading to a “very strong” typhoon by JMA with winds up to 252kph and pressure down below 925hpa. The first images at sunrise display an impressive storm that should indicate to anyone ahead of it this is a serious and potentially dangerous storm system.
During the morning hours it does look like at least for now it is going through a eye wall replacement cycle. This means a short period of weakening is possible before it re-intensifies further when the Typhoon machine gets turned back on fully.
Impacts, “When and Where”
Already signal #1 warnings have been issued in North East Luzon, this is basically the equivalent of a “Typhoon Watch” for this area as one can be assure it will climb up to a 3 and possibly level 4 as Haima nears.
Throughout the day on Wednesday conditions in north east Luzon will go down hill with the worst of the weather likely being overnight in to early morning Thursday across parts of Isabella and Cagayan.
Good news is this area is built for typhoons and residents have become hardy to them, but just coming off of the recent Typhoon Sarika “Karen” many locations may still be recovering or structures may have already had been weakened by that storm making them more vulnerable to Haima.
The same thing goes for the rainfall, much of the soil across central and northern Luzon has been saturated and flooding has already been taking place as shown in the video below shot by Videographer James Reynolds during “Sarika”.
NASA satellite estimates also confirm this with a few locations receiving up to 400-500mm of total rainfall over the past weekend. This means flooding and landslides especially in rural areas or areas with poor infrastructure will be a high risk with Haima moving over head. This will be especially true from Ilagan City north through Aparri.
The Chance of the track wavering?
One of the most common questions I get, “Is it possible for the storms track to change north or south?” Two things to answer this question.
- The question is always going to be “yes”. Of course it is possible for the storms track to change, a better question would be “what are the chances or is it likely”.
- At this time if the track does waver it shouldn’t be too much, most model consensus and the agencies all agree on the track to the north west following south of a high pressure ridge located near Okinawa before turning north towards the Hong Kong area later in the week.
Keeping a close eye on Hong Kong and if the storm could impact that area. Right now models are taking the storm close to the city but some are also pulling it further east in to Fujian, its all about how it rounds the sub-tropical ridge later this week, and is why checking back in on updates with the storm is smart.
COMPARING HAIYAN TO HAIMA!
This is a disturbing trend I have been seeing in social media this week, granted Haima looks dangerous and could very well be deadly if people do not prepare it is no Haiyan.
First, Haima is smaller than Haiyan in about every way possible.
Second, It is heading towards a area more used to typhoons and prepared, instead of the low lying coastal villages of Samar and Leyte
Last, there has been lots of improvements in warnings since Haiyan, granted there is still much more to be done it feels like the government is much more swift and serious about getting people out of harms way.