Sep 17, 2022 - Energy & Environment

Typhoon Nanmadol to slam Japan, may be one of country's most expensive storms

Infrared image of Typhoon Nanmadol. Credit: CIRA/RAMMB
Infrared image of Typhoon Nanmadol. Credit: CIRA/RAMMB

Japan is urging hundreds of thousands of residents to evacuate ahead of the landfall of a typhoon that could be one of the most destructive and expensive storms to hit the country in years.

Driving the news: Typhoon Nanmadol is forecast to make landfall on Sunday. It's current maximum sustained winds are at 145 mph, as estimated by the Joint Typhoon Warning Center, making it a dangerous Category 4 storm. It could bring as much as 20 inches of rainfall in just 24 hours to certain areas, the BBC reports.

  • Kyushu has a population of more than 13 million people.
  • A “special alert” has been issued for the area, warning of potential flooding and landslides once the storm hits, the Japan Times reports.
  • After making landfall, the typhoon is forecast to move northeast through central Japan towards Tokyo.

Threat level: Japan's meteorological agency said Saturday that the typhoon had the potential to be more devastating than both Typhoon Jebi in 2018, which left 14 people dead, and Typhoon Hagibis in 2019, which killed dozens and caused widespread flooding and power outages, BBC reports.

Thought bubble from Axios' Andrew Freedman: "Typhoon Nanmadol is on course to slam highly populated regions in Japan, from Nagasaki to Osaka. While high winds and storm surge flooding are likely to be damaging, heavy rains and related flooding and mudslides may be the storm's greatest threat."

  • "Historically, typhoons that approach Japan from the southwest have tended to be extraordinarily destructive, ranking among the top 10 list of most expensive typhoons on record. It is quite possible, even likely, that Nanmadol will join this list, even though it has begun to weaken slightly as it moves toward Japan."
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