U.S. bases in Kanto Plain brace for Yagi's winds
CAMP FOSTER, Okinawa — Yagi, the 16th storm of the northwest Pacific’s tropical cyclone season, strengthened into a super typhoon Thursday. The Joint Typhoon Warning Center’s forecast track and local weather outlook indicated Yagi will pass well to the east of Tokyo on Sunday but may threaten coastal areas with wind gusts of more than 45 mph.
U.S. Forces Japan bases on the Kanto Plain, including Yokota Air Base, Camp Zama, Camp Fuji, Naval Air Facility Atsugi and Yokosuka Naval Base, entered Tropical Cyclone Condition of Readiness 4 at 6 p.m. Thursday, according to a fax sent by weather officials at Yokota and received by Stripes on Thursday afternoon.
At 6 p.m. Thursday, Yagi swirled 500 miles east-southeast of Iwo Jima, rumbling west-northwest at 17 mph, packing sustained winds of 150 mph and 184 mph gusts at its center.
Yagi is forecast to continue churning west into the weekend before bending sharply back to the east, coming only as close as 255 miles southeast of Yokosuka and 283 miles southeast of Yokota at 4 p.m. Sunday before gradually dissipating east of Japan’s northernmost islands.
Capt. Warren Comer, 374th Airlift Wing spokesman, said Yokota “will be on the weak side of the storm” and can expect wind gusts up to 35 knots (40 mph) with about 1.5 inches of rain late Sunday afternoon and into the evening.
Yokosuka weather forecasts call for isolated showers throughout the weekend, with the onset of winds Friday evening and continuing through midday Monday. Strongest gusts are expected to be 46 mph from mid-evening Sunday into Monday morning, according to Fleet Activities Yokosuka’s Web site at www.cfay.nay.mil. Officials there could not be reached immediately Thursday evening for comment.