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5:45 p.m. Friday, July 8, Taiwan time: Nepartak has exited southern Taiwan and has entered the Formosa Strait, steadily weakening as it continues interacting with land on its east and west sides and heads toward secondary landfall around mid-day Saturday over southeastern China. At least two were killed and more than 65 injured during the eight hours Nepartak spent over Taiwan, the BBC reported. Some 15,000 were forced from their homes, 270,000 suffered power loss and hundreds of flights were canceled. In the Philippines, Public Storm Warning Signal 1 has been pulled down for the northern Babuyan islands. Barring a drastic change, this should be PST's last report on Typhoon Nepartak.11:15 a.m. Friday, July 8, Taiwan time: It’s happening. Nepartak has been downgraded to a regular ol’, run-of-the-mill typhoon, in the Category 2-equivalent range. It makes its way ashore over southern Taiwan at about 6 a.m., and is still packing sustained 104-mph winds and 127-mph gusts as it crawls over the south part of the island. Nepartak should make its way back over water, over the Formosa Strait, later Friday and make secondary landfall over southeastern China late Saturday morning before dying out. In the Philippines, Public Storm Warning Signal 1 remains up for the Babuyan islands.5:15 a.m. Friday, July 8, Taiwan time: Closer, ever closer, Nepartak gets to landfall over south-central Taiwan, and even as it begins encountering land, the thing remains a very dangerous Category 4-equivalent super typhoon, packing 150-mph sustained winds and 184-mph gusts as it closes in on shore. Nepartak’s storm center should crash ashore sometime mid-Friday morning, gradually deteriorating as it crosses the island, the Formosa Strait and make secondary landfall over southeastern China Saturday afternoon.

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5:15 p.m. Thursday, July 7, Taiwan time:Nepartak’s outer bands have begun ravaging Taiwan along its east and central portions. Pretty soon, the entire island will begin to feel the Category 5-equivalent super typhoon’s full fury. At 2 p.m., Nepartak was 270 miles south-southeast of the capital Taipei, and its forward speed has slowed significantly; it’s moving west-northwest at about 10 mph, some 6 mph slower than earlier today and about half the forward speed of the past couple of days. Simply put, that means Nepartak is planning to take its own sweet time as it passes over south-central Taiwan. While Nepartak continues packing 167-mph sustained winds and 201-mph gusts, its strength has slightly diminished, and will even more so as it makes its way across the island. Nepartak is forecast by the Joint Typhoon Warning Center to pass 132 miles southwest of Taipei at 4 p.m. Friday, exiting the island at mid-afternoon Friday, still as a significant Category 2-equivalent storm, but rapidly losing its punch as it crosses the Formosa Strait into China early Saturday morning, then dying out over southeastern China. Weather outlook for U.S. bases on Okinawa remains the same; Nepartak has already made its closest point of approach to the island. Philippines’ northernmost islands are also feeling the effects; Public Storm Warning Signal 2 remains up for the Batanes islands and Signal 1 for the Babuyan islands.11:45 a.m. Thursday, July 7, Taiwan time:Batten down the hatches, central Taiwan; Super Typhoon Nepartak remains a dangerous Category 5-euivalent storm and is headed right at you. Landfall is forecast for early Friday morning over the central part of the island nation, about 114 miles south-southwest of the capital Taipei, and it should remain a super typhoon, estimated 161-mph sustained winds and 196-mph gusts, as it barrels ashore. Okinawa and U.S. bases on the island remain well to Nepartak’s northeast. Closest point of approach was forecast to be at 10 a.m. Japan time, 420 miles southwest of the island. Okinawa should feel some effects from the outer bands; southerly winds approaching 27 mph with gusts as high as 37 mph and a 70-percent chance of showers and thunderstorms through Monday. China’s east-southeast coast is next, according to the Joint Typhoon Warning Center’s forecast track, smashing ashore around midnight Friday, then rapidly losing power as it makes its way over land. Unless something changes, Nepartak is expected to die out over east-central China. U.S. facilities and assets in the Philippines should be well out of harm’s way, though the islands north of the country’s northernmost main island of Luzon should feel some effects from Nepartak’s southern bands. Public Storm Warning Signal 2 is up for the Batanes islands, while PSWS 1 is up for the Calayan and Babuyan islands, according to the country's weather authority PAGASA.6 p.m. Wednesday, July 6, Japan time: Super Typhoon Nepartak has reached its peak intensity, 173-mph sustained winds and 207-mph gusts, much quicker than earlier projected by the Joint Typhoon Warning Center. Nepartak’s forecast track has also deviated a bit further west, putting it on course to slam into the east coast of central Taiwan at about 2 a.m. Friday, packing sustained 138-mph winds and 166-mph gusts as it crashes ashore, some 78 miles south-southwest of the island capital of Taipei. U.S. bases on Okinawa remain out of harm’s way, with Nepartak due to pass 400 miles west-southwest of Kadena Air Base at mid-morning Thursday. Forecast for the rest of the week remains the same as reported on this channel earlier. U.S. bases on island remain in seasonal Tropical Cyclone Condition of Readiness 4; no upgrade is expected at this time. Nepartak’s path takes it somewhat closer to the Philippines, though well out of the way of U.S. assets on the northernmost island of Luzon. Public Storm Warning Signal 1 remains in effect for the northernmost Batanes islands, as issued by the Philippines’ weather authority PAGASA.UPDATED 1:30 p.m. Wednesday, July 6, Japan time: Super Typhoon Nepartak’s forecast track continues shifting further west , well away from U.S. bases on Okinawa,with every passing update. But the first Category 5-equivalent storm of the northwest Pacific’s tropical cyclone season continues to intensify; peak forecast winds border on the unthinkable. At 9 a.m., Nepartak was 545 miles south-southeast of Kadena Air Base, packing sustained 161-mph winds and 196-mph gusts at its center. If it remains on its Joint Typhoon Warning Center forecast track, Nepartak is expected to peak at 173-mph sustained winds and 207-mph gusts at mid-morning Thursday. As a point of reference, Super Typhoon Haiyan, the worst storm on record in the northwest Pacific, packed sustained 145-mph winds and 195-mph gusts at its peak on Nov. 7, 2013. The news is only slightly better for Japan’s southwestern-most islands. Miyako now appears to be outside of Nepartak’s forecast 40-mph wind bands and Ishigaki smack in the middle. Yonaguni, just east of Taiwan, appears well within Nepartak’s forecast 58-mph wind bands. Taiwan remains directly in Nepartak’s crosshairs, with landfall expected early Friday morning, still packing sustained 138-mph winds and 167-mph gusts as it roars ashore. Public Storm Warning Signal 1 has been issued by the Philippines' weather authority PAGASA for the Batanes island group north of Luzon. winds between 18 and 37 mph are forecast within 36 hours for the islands. Long-term, Nepartak is then due to make secondary landfall early Saturday morning over east-southeast China, curving back toward Shanghai as a significant tropical storm before crossing back out over water in the Yellow Sea (West Sea) southwas of the Korean peninsula as a tropical depression. It might die out before it even becomes something of a threat to U.S. bases in Korea.6 a.m. Wednesday, July 6, Japan time: Nepartak completed its third day of existence by becoming the first super typhoon of the northwest Pacific’s tropical cyclone season, and is taking dead aim at Taipei, Taiwan’s capital.

U.S. bases on Okinawa remain out of harm’s way, with Nepartak still on course to pass 360 miles west-southwest of Kadena Air Base at 11 a.m. Thursday. It’s Okinawa’s neighbors to the southwest, particularly Yonaguni, that stand to take Nepartak’s full fury before reaching Taiwan.

Nepartak is forecast to peak at 167-mph sustained winds and 201-mph gusts early morning Thursday. It’s due to make landfall on Taiwan’s northeast coast at about 3 a.m. Friday, packing sustained 144-mph winds and 173-mph gusts as it crashes ashore.

Nepartak should weaken some as it makes it way north along China’s east coast, arcing just west of Shanghai and back over water in the Yellow Sea (West Sea) southwest of the Korean peninsula as a significant tropical storm.

Showers and thunderstorms should pick up on Okinawa starting Thursday afternoon, according to Kadena’s Shogunweather.com. Expect a 70-percent chance of rainfall through Sunday, with easterly to southerly winds up to 27 mph and gusts reaching 41 mph throughout the weekend.

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11:30 p.m. Tuesday, July 5, Japan time: The good news for U.S. bases on Okinawa is, Typhoon Nepartak remains on course to travel well away from the island, about 355 miles west-southwest at around 11 a.m. Thursday.

The bad news: Nepartak is intensifying rapidly, so much so that it likely will become the first super typhoon of the northwest Pacific season, in addition to being the first named storm.

Joint Typhoon Warning Center forecasts Nepartak to peak at Category 5-equivalent winds, 161-mph sustained winds and 196-mph gusts sometime Wednesday evening.

Nepartak is on track to rumble just southwest of Japan’s Yonaguni island, then make a near-direct hit on Taiwan’s capital, Taipei, at about 7 a.m. Friday. Nepartak is then projected to skim the eastern sections of China, making a near-direct hit on Shanghai before re-entering the water over the Yellow Sea (West Sea) in the Korean peninsula’s general direction.

PST remains on the lookout.

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6 p.m. Tuesday, July 5, Japan time: The bad news: Nepartak continues to strengthen and is forecast by the Joint Typhoon Warning Center to peak at just below super-typhoon strength: 144-mph sustained winds and 173-mph gusts at about 3 a.m. Thursday. The worse news, at least for Japan's southwestern-most island of Yonaguni and Taiwan's northern edges: Nepartak is aiming its crosshairs right at Yonaguni, which should get the typhoon's full brunt late Thursday afternoon. It is then forecast rake the north and northeast coasts of Taiwan, just 10 miles northeast of the capital of Taipei, around 8 a.m. Friday, sporting peak winds or close to it at center as it passes. Okinawa should be further out of harm's way, with closest point of approach now 350 miles west-southwest of Kadena Air Base at about 11 a.m. Thursday. Forecast winds for Okinawa remain the same as reported earlier. PST remains ever vigilant.Noon Tuesday, July 5, Japan time: Nepartak strengthened Tuesday morning into the first typhoon of the northwest Pacific’s tropical cyclone season, Joint Typhoon Warning Center reported in its latest bulletin. At 9 a.m. Tuesday, Nepartak was 927 miles southeast of Kadena Air Base, Okinawa, moving northwest at about 20 mph. If it remains on its present course, Nepartak should pass 284 miles west-southwest of Kadena at 3 p.m. Thursday. It's forecast to peak at 132-mph sustained winds and 161-mph gusts at center at 9 a.m. Friday, just off the northeast coast of Taiwan. Okinawa should start feeling the effects Wednesday afternoon, with 40- to 70-percent chance of showers and thunderstorms into Saturday, with easterly winds shifting southerly later in the week, between 22 and 29 mph and gusts between 30 and 43 mph, according to Shogunweather.com.12:15 a.m. Tuesday, July 5, Japan time: Tropical Storm Nepartak remains on course to barrel through Ishigaki and Japan's southwestern-most Ryukyu Island sometime Thursday. The question is, where does it go from there? Joint Typhoon Warning Center's latest forecast track has Nepartak curving northeast in the general direction of the Tsushima Strait, between southern Korea and southwestern Japan. But that's four to five days out, and much can change in the interim. Closest point of approach to Okinawa is 273 miles west-southwest of Kadena Air Base at about 5 p.m. Thursday. Peak winds of 127-mph sustained and 155-mph gusts are forecast for 9 p.m. PST remains on it.

6:30 p.m. Monday, July 4, Japan time: Tropical Storm Nepartak continues heading northwest and has made its closest point of approach to Guam. Joint Typhoon Warning Center's latest forecast track takes Nepartak even further away from Okinawa than previously, along China's east coast. If Nepartak remains on its current track, it should pass some 290 miles west-southwest of Kadena Air Base at around high noon Thursday. Peak winds are forecast to be 121-mph sustained and 150-mph gusts at around 3 p.m. Thursday. Long term, Nepartak is forecast to become a Category 1-equivalent typhoon about mid-afternoon Tuesday and skirt the Chinese east coast, passing just off Shanghai at about 2 p.m. Saturday China time, still packing 92-mph sustained winds and 115-mph gusts. That's five days out, and although dynamic model guidance is in fairly tight agreement, all this could change. PST remains ever vigilant.3:15 p.m. Monday, July 4, Guam time: Happy July 4th, campers! Welcome to a record-setting northwest Pacific tropical cyclone season, y'all. Ma Nature has set a record for longest gap between named storms -- exactly 200 days between Typhoon Melor last December and Tropical Storm Nepartak, which just spawned over the weekend. The previous record was 198, set twice, in 1973 and 1998. It's also the second-latest start to a northwest Pacific tropical cyclone season. The record is held by 1998, when Akang spawned on July 9, six days later than Nepartak. Third place is held by 1973, when Wilda formed on July 2. For long-timers on Okinawa, that might come as a bit of disquieting news. For a year after the latest start on record, 1999, was the year of the last truly mighty storm to batter the place -- Super Typhoon Bart. No comfort there. (thanks to Tokyo-based meteorologist Robert Speta for that graphic, which can be viewed at several social media sites). As for Nepartak, it continues slowly developing and most west-southwest of Guam. No typhoon-strength winds expected on island, but it should be a wet, gusty rest of the Fourth of July, with rain squalls and gusts up to 40 mph. No watches or warnings are in effect for Guam and surrounding territories. The island remains in seasonal Condition of Readiness 4. Long term, Nepartak remains on track to barrel northwest over the next three days, according to the Joint Typhoon Warning Center, with Ishigaki, one of Japan's southwestern-most Ryukyu Islands, in the crosshairs. Closet point of approach has diverted slightly further west of Okinawa, 282 miles west-southwest at about 3 p.m. Japan time Thursday. Kadena Air Base's weather Web site, Shogunweather.com, forecasts east-southeast winds picking up Wednesday, 22-mph sustained winds and between 29- and 32-mph gusts into Friday. Japanese weather Web site Tenki.jp projects rain beginning Wednesday afternoon and between 60- to 80-percent chance of showers and thunderstorms into Friday. U.S. bases on Okinawa remain in seasonal Tropical Cyclone Condition of Readiness 4. After passing through Ishigaki, Nepartak is forecast to rumble past Taiwan and curve north in the general direction of the Yellow Sea (West Sea), south-southwest of the Korean peninsula. Too early to tell exactly which way it will head. As for trying to access the JTWC's public Web page, it's dawg goned difficult right now, since there's so much demand and the fact that the page migrated to a new site in early May. Be patient, PST's contact at JTWC counsels. Keep trying. PST finally got through a while ago. And PST will keep vigilant watch.9:45 p.m. Sunday, July 3, Guam time: Nepartak was upgraded very quickly to tropical-storm status by the Joint Typhoon Warning Center earlier this evening and is still forecast to begin tracking northwest past Guam on Tuesday and toward Japan's southwestern Ryukyu Islands later this week. National Weather Service on Guam has issued a small-craft advisory through 6 a.m. Tuesday. Easterly winds between 18 and 29 mph are forecast Sunday evening, increasing to betweem 23 and 29 mph with 40-mph gusts Monday, with seas between 7 and 11 feet, and decreasing Monday night. Guam and U.S. bases on the island remain in seasonal Condition of Readiness 4. Long term, Nepartak is forecast to increase in intensity as it tracks northwest, in the general direction of Miyako Island some 200 miles southwest of Okinawa. Nepartak is forecast to peak at 127-mph sustained winds and 155-mph gusts at around 3 p.m. Thursday Japan time, with closest point of approach 217 miles west-southwest about six hours later. U.S. bases on Okinawa remain in seasonal TCCOR 4. PST will update.12:30 p.m. Sunday, July 3, Japan time: It's official: The second numbered tropical cyclone and the first named storm of the northwest Pacific's season, which has formed south of Guam. Joint Typhoon Warning Center just issued its first warning on Tropical Depression Nepartak at noon Sunday. Still much too early to tell definitively where Nepartak will head. JTWC's initial forecast track projects a west-northwest movement, knifing its way between Taiwan and Okinawa over Japan's very southwestern Ryukyu Islands. Peak intensity forecast to be 121-mph sustained winds and 150-mph gusts at about 9 a.m. Thursday. Closest point of approach projected to be 233 miles west-southwest of Kadena Air Base at about midnight Thursday Japan time. PST has an eye on it.Noon Sunday, July 3, Guam time: The disturbance south of Guam has been upgraded to a tropical storm by the Japan Meteorological Agency and has been dubbed Nepartak, a Micronesian word for famous Kosrae warrior. Joint Typhoon Warning Center still has a tropical cyclone formation alert out on the system and has not upgraded it to a tropical cyclone as of 11:45 a.m. Projected path takes the disturbance northwest in the general direction of Taiwan and Japan's southwestern Ryukyu Islands over the next few days.7 p.m. Saturday, July 2, Guam time: The heretofore nearly silent northwest Pacific tropical cyclone season is about to get less quiet, if developments south of Guam and southeast of Yap are any indicator. A tropical cyclone formation alert was issued at 4:30 p.m. by the Joint Typhoon Warning Center on a disturbance that's developing quickly, about 215 miles south of Guam. Dynamic model guidance says the disturbance is forecast to develop over the next 24 to 36 hours and track northwest, with most models generally agreeing that it should head toward Taiwan, then curve north, possibly back toward Okinawa or ahead toward the Korean peninsula. National Weather Service on Guam reports the disturbance should head in the general direction of Yap and Palau, bringing a forecast of showers and thundershowers with between 3 to 6 inches of rain possible as the system moves northwest. It's way too early to tell definitively which way it will head. PST has an eye on it.


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