Tropical cyclone season upon us once more
4 p.m. Wednesday, May 25, Japan time: In just a few days, June 1, we can expect the commanding officer of Kadena Air Base's 18th Wing to issue seasonal Tropical Cyclone Condition of Readiness 4 for all U.S. installations on Okinawa. That signals the start of the six-month northwest Pacific tropical cyclone season, the time when tropical depressions, tropical storms, typhoons and super typhoons are most likely to occur in this part of the world. TCCOR 4 typically means that 58-mph winds are possible within 72 hours. For folks in the tropics, it quite literally means they're in an area when tropical cyclones can spawn quickly, sometimes with no or very little warning. Such occurred in mid-September 2003 when what became Typhoon Choi-Wan spawned quite literally right over Okinawa, and U.S. bases went from TCCOR 4 straight to TCCOR 1. Caused quite the sudden run on the commissaries, exchanges and shoppettes. U.S. bases in Japan's main islands and Korea for the most part remain in TCCOR All Clear until conditions warrant upgraded TCCORs. Guam, along the 13th parallel, remains in TCCOR 4 year-round. Pacific Storm Tracker will keep a strident, vigilant watch on the northwest Pacific region, as it does in all areas of the world's largest ocean throughout the year. It's about alerting the masses and keeping them safe. Nothing that says one should not begin preparations for the worst as early as possible. Give the links in the menu on the right side of this page a good read. Know and understand what the TCCORs mean, and the steps one should take to prepare for an eventual typhoon. Get your safe on!