Fox News Weather Center

Halong Becomes a Super Typhoon; Japan in Harm's Way

Halong has been rapidly intensifying to start the weekend, becoming a super typhoon early Saturday night, local time, with maximum sustained winds of 250 kph (155 mph).

Halong is expected to remain a very dangerous typhoon through the rest of the weekend and into the coming week.

While not impacting land through at least Tuesday local time, Halong will remain over the open waters of the Philippine Sea and creating life-threatening, dangerous seas for shipping interests.

There is currently some wind shear affecting the storm which, if strong enough, typically weakens tropical systems. However, Halong has easily overcome this shear and now has a very well-defined eye along with a robust eye wall.

Early in the coming week, environmental conditions will remain conducive for tropical development along the track the storm. This should allow Halong to remain a very powerful typhoon. As a result, meteorologists expect there to be the potential for a major typhoon to impact southern Japan later in the week.

While the current path of Halong puts the northern Ryukyu Islands and southern Japan at greatest risk of a direct landfall with heavy rain and damaging winds, all residents of Japan, the Korean Peninsula and even northeastern China should closely monitor the typhoon for potential dangers and any adjustments to the forecast track.

Tokyo is one location that is currently not expected to receive the worst of the storm, but the city and surrounding areas will likely see gusty winds and locally heavy rainfall as tropical moisture rotates across the country.

Impacts in southern Japan are expected to worsen beginning on Thursday with typhoon conditions possibly lasting into Saturday in some locations.

Not only will the impacts from Halong have the potential to cause serious impacts in southern Japan, this same area has already seen flooding rainfall during the past several days as a result of Tropical Storm Nakri.

During the past few days, Nakri has brought 250-500 mm (10-20 inches) of rain to some places in Kyushu and Shikoku, according to observation sites across these islands. Multiple locations received more than 10 inches within a single day. Additional rainfall is likely through the rest of the weekend which will worsen any ongoing flooding.

Because of this recent heavy rain, impacts from Halong will likely be exacerbated. With the current forecast track, major flooding will occur in southern Japan along with mudslides, wind damage and coastal flooding due to storm surge.