Newly formed Tropical Depression 03W, named Yagi, will churn slowly over the Philippine Sea this weekend before taking aim at southern Japan this week.
Yagi will continue to drift northeastward through the Philippine Sea this weekend, and will encounter very warm ocean waters and light winds aloft. These two factors will help Yagi strengthen into a tropical storm by Sunday.
Yagi will continue to move slowly through the Philippine Sea Sunday and Monday, likely reaching peak intensity on Monday. At that time, Yagi will likely have sustained winds near 60 mph, making it a strong tropical storm.
HIgh pressure to the east of Yagi will strengthen early in the week and will help steer the storm toward the north or even northwest. On this track, Yagi will take aim at southern Japan by the middle of the week. However, Yagi will be moving over colder ocean waters on Tuesday prior to landfall. These colder waters should allow Yagi to weaken prior to landfall early Wednesday morning.
Still, Yagi will likely be a minimal tropical storm when it moves very close to Osaka Wednesday morning. Wind gusts of 40-50 mph will still be possible, though flooding rains will be the main impact from Yagi. Widespread rainfall of 3-5 inches will be common across southern Japan, while local amounts in excess of 10 inches may occur in the mountains. Some rain from Yagi will likely move through Tokyo later Tuesday night and Wednesday.