Francisco to Drench Southeastern Japan
By By Eric Leister, Meteorologist
October 25, 2013, 1:31:34 AM EDT
Typhoon Francisco is approaching eastern Japan but will turn to the northeast late this week as it weakens.
Francisco remains a typhoon for now, but has weakened greatly since reaching its peak intensity.
This past weekend, Francisco was deemed the world's second strongest storm of 2013, behind Super Typhoon Usagi. However, Francisco dropped to third place when Super Typhoon
Although Francisco has weakened, anyone living in or traveling to Japan should not let their guard down. A track very similar to that of deadly Typhoon Wipha from last week is expected.
Over the past 24-hours, the likelihood of an actual landfall has decreased, with signs indicated that the center of the storm will make a sharper curve to the northeast and passing south of Japan.
Francisco will be weakened further by the time it nears Tokyo and will likely be a tropical storm as it passes very close to Tokyo. Nonetheless, periods of rain could still impact the country, especially in southeastern Japan.
The threat of flash flooding, damaging winds and mudslides persists for areas of southeast Japan, including Miyazaki and Osaka.
The main factor steering Francisco will be a trough that moves into Japan by the middle of the week. This trough will pull moisture from Francisco northward, ahead of the storm leading to heavy rainfall across portions of Kyushu, Shikoku and southeastern Honshu Wednesday night into Thursday.
A prolonged period of rainfall for these locations will result in rainfall amounts of 150-250 mm (6-10 inches) with local amounts over 300 mm (12 inches) through Friday.
The heaviest rainfall will remain south and west of Tokyo, but residents can expect the worst of the storm from late Thursday night into Friday as the center of Francisco passes to the south then quickly moves off to the northeast.
The Tokyo Metropolitan Area is expected to receive a general 25 to 75 mm (1 to 3 inches) of rainfall, heaviest west of the city. In terms of winds, gusts to near 80 kph (50 mph) will be possible.
Adding to the concern is already saturated soil across southern and eastern Japan following former Typhoon Wipha last week and another low pressure system that brought several inches of additional rainfall over the weekend.
Many parts of southern and eastern Japan have already received more than double the normal monthly October rainfall totals. This will only increase the threat of flooding and mudslides as torrential rainfall from Francisco arrives later this week.
All residents and visitors to Japan should continue to check back with AccuWeather.com for the latest updates on Francisco.
Content of this story contributed by AccuWeather.com Meteorologist Courtney Spamer.
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