Typhoon Kong-rey Brings Wind and Rain to Okinawa

Typhoon Kong-rey was bringing wind and rain to Okinawa on Wednesday night.  At 11:00 p.m. EDT on Wednesday the center of Typhoon Kong-rey was located at latitude 23.6°N and longitude 127.3°W which put it about 230 miles (375 km) south of Okinawa.  Kong-rey was moving toward the northwest at 10 m.p.h. (16 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 80 m.p.h. (130 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 100 m.p.h. (160 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 964 mb.

Typhoon Kongrey weakened steadily during Wednesday.  The eye became less distinct on satellite imagery.  The ring of strong thunderstorms around the eye broke and stronger thunderstorms were only occurring to the east of the eye.  It appeared that Typhoon Kong-rey was pulling cooler, drier air into the western half of the circulation and that air was wrapping around the southern half of the typhoon.  Kong-rey may have also moved over some cooler water that was mixed to the surface by Typhoon Trami last week.

The circulation around Typhoon Kong-rey was still large.  Winds to typhoon force extended out about 70 miles (110 km) from the center of circulation.  Winds to tropical storm force extended out about 230 miles (375 km) from the center.  The Hurricane Intensity Index (HII) for Typhoon Kong-rey was 11.5.  The Hurricane Size Index (HSI) was 24.7 and the Hurricane Wind Intensity Size Index (HWISI) was 36.2.

Typhoon Kong-rey will move around the western end of a subtropical ridge over the Western North Pacific Ocean.  The ridge will steer Kong-rey toward the north during the next 24 to 36 hours.  Typhoon Kong-rey will turn more toward the northeast in about 36 hours.

The outer rainbands on the northern side of Typhoon Kong-rey are already over Okinawa.  Kong-rey will drop heavy rain and it will produce gusty winds over Okinawa and the Ryukyu Islands on Thursday.  The wind and rain will hinder efforts to recover from damage caused by Typhoon Trami.  Typhoon Kong-rey could be southeast of Kyushu in about 36 hours and it could be near South Korea in about 48 hours.  The soil in much of Japan is already near saturation and more heavy rain could cause flash flooding.  Typhoon Kong-rey could also hinder recovery efforts in Kyushu, Shikoku and Honshu.