A storm system currently bringing rain to eastern China and Taiwan will strengthen as it tracks northeast in the coming days.
The strengthening of the storm system will continue as it tracks just east of Japan Saturday and Sunday.
Rainfall will reach the coasts of Kyushu and Shikoku on Friday then spread through southeastern Honshu Friday night. Inland and mountainous areas of both Kyushu and Shikoku will begin as a mix of rain and snow that will change to all snow rather quickly after the precipitation begins. All of the inland areas of Honshu will see heavy snow.
A man watches the snow-covered Imperial Palace in Tokyo, Wednesday, Feb. 29, 2012. Snowfall overnight covers the Metro area, causing delay of public transportation. (AP Photo/Junji Kurokawa)
On Saturday, a mix of heavy snow and rain will occur across the coasts of southern Honshu and Shikoku while heavy snow falls in the higher elevations to the north. The Kanto Plain, which includes the city of Tokyo, can expect as much as 15-30 cm (6-12 inches) of snow, with much higher amounts of more than 60 cm (more than 2 feet) in the Japanese Alps.
The greatest threat for flooding will occur from near and south of Osaka northeastward along the southern coast of Honshu.
The main impacts from the storm will shift into northeast Honshu by Sunday then lift into Hokkaido Sunday night and Monday.
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Tropical Depression Seven strengthened into Tropical Storm Gaston during Monday night with another system attempting to form near the Caribbean.
Following a fall-like start to the week, warmth and humidity will build over the northeastern United States prior to the weekend.
A budding tropical disturbance has the potential to reach Florida with gusty winds, showers and thunderstorms during Sunday and Monday.
The return of warmer and more humid air will trigger another round of strong thunderstorms across the central United States this week.
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Huge hail caused severe damage in eastern North Dakota. Some hail was as large as six inches in diameter. Holes were punched in roofs and 16,000 acres of crops were destroyed.
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