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Dangerous Category 2 Typhoon Haiyan Headed For the Philippines

By: Dr. Jeff Masters, 3:14 PM GMT on November 05, 2013

Category 2 Typhoon Haiyan is rapidly intensifying as it steams west-northwest at 17 mph towards the Philippine Islands. Satellite loops show that Haiyan is a large and steadily organizing typhoon, with plenty of intense thunderstorms that are developing very cold cloud tops as they push high into the atmosphere. With warm waters that extend to great depth, low wind shear, and excellent upper-level outflow, there is nothing to keep Haiyan from growing into a 150 mph super typhoon by Thursday, and it may have a chance at becoming Earth's fifth Category 5 storm of 2013. Both the GFS and European models predict that Haiyan will hit the central Philippines between 3 - 6 UTC on Friday, and Haiyan will likely be the most dangerous tropical cyclone to affect the Philippines this year. This is particularly true since Tropical Depression Thirty dumped heavy rains over the central Philippines Monday, which helped saturate the soils. This morning's 06Z run of the HWRF model (Figure 2) predicted that Haiyan would hit the Philippines as a Category 3 storm, bringing a 200-mile wide swath of 4 - 8 inches of rain.

Figure 1. Visible satellite image of Haiyan taken just before sunset at 6:57 UTC November 5, 2013. Image credit: NOAA.

Figure 2. Predicted rainfall from the 06Z November 5, 2013 run of the HWRF model, for the 126-hour period ending at 12Z November 10, 2013. A 30-mile wide swath of 8+ inches of rain (medium dark red colors) is predicted to cross the Central Philippines, with a 200-mile wide swath of the islands receiving 4 - 8" (red colors.) Image credit: NOAA/NCEP/EMC.

Tropical Storm 30 a heavy rainfall threat for Southeast Asia
Tropical Storm 30 will hit southern Vietnam near 12 UTC on Wednesday, and bring heavy rains of 8+ inches to portions of Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, and Thailand over the next few days. By Friday, the storm will emerge in the North Indian Ocean, where it will likely regenerate and potentially threaten Myanmar, India, or Bangladesh early next week.

Jeff Masters


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