Typhoon Mitag could make landfall in NE Taiwan today, bring 'crazy wind explosive rain' tonight

Land warning issued for 13 counties, cities as typhoon could have biggest impact on Taiwan in 2 years

NOAA animated GIF.

NOAA animated GIF.

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The Central Weather Bureau has issued a sea and land warning for 13 counties and cities, as Typhoon Mitag is expected to come closest to Taiwan this afternoon (Sept. 30), potentially making landfall in northeastern Taiwan and resulting in the largest impact by a typhoon in the area in two years.

At 11:30 p.m. on Sunday (Sept. 29), Tropical Storm Mitag intensified into a typhoon, prompting the closure of offices and schools in eight counties and cities in Taiwan. As of 8 a.m. this morning, Typhoon Mitag was located 370 kilometers south-southeast of Yilan County and heading north-northwest at a speed of 27 kilometers per hour (kph).

Typhoon Mitag was packing maximum sustained winds of 126 kilometers per hour, with gusts of up to 162 kph. The radius of the storm that contains level 7 winds on the Beaufort scale is 180 kilometers, while the radius of storm packing level 10 winds is 60 kilometers.

CWB division chief Lo Ya-yin (羅雅尹) said that Mitag's path has shifted slightly westward toward Taiwan proper. If the Pacific high-pressure ridge shifts slightly or the typhoon is affected by Taiwan's topography, it is possible that Typhoon Mitag could make landfall in Taiwan today in the northeastern corner of the country.

Map from Facebook group WeatherRisk.

On his Facebook page this morning, WeatherRisk Explore Inc. President Peng Chi-ming (彭啟明) said that rain will likely increase significantly this afternoon as the typhoon nears. By this evening, Taiwan could see "crazy wind and explosive rain," marking the most significant impact a typhoon has had on northern Taiwan in two years, wrote Peng.

The CWB has issued sea and land warnings for New Taipei City, Taipei City, Taoyuan City, Miaoli County, Taichung City, Keelung City, Yilan County, Hsinchu County, Hsinchu City, Hualien County, Nantou County, Lienchiang County, and Taitung County (including Green Island and Orchid Island). The CWB has issued torrential rain warnings for New Taipei City, Yilan County, and Taoyuan City.

The weather bureau has issued an extremely heavy rain warning for Taipei City, Miaoli County, Taichung City, Keelung City, Hsinchu County, and Hualien County. The CWB has announced a heavy rain warning for Hsinchu City, Nantou County, Taitung County, Chiayi County, and Kaohsiung City.

Predicted rain on Mon. (left), expected rain Mon. evening, Tue. morning (right).

Lo said that as the typhoon's center gradually approaches the waters off the southeastern coast of Taiwan, rain bands will begin to descend on Taiwan, with bursts of rain increasingly likely in northern and northeastern Taiwan. Starting this afternoon and well into the evening, Lo said that rain in northern Taiwan, Yilan, and northern Hualien will increase dramatically.

Lo predicted that during this period, heavy rainfall will be possible in greater Taipei, Yilan, and mountainous areas of Taichung and Hualien. Meanwhile, central and southern Taiwan are likely to see relatively lighter precipitation.

CWB map showing Mitag's position at 10 a.m. Mon. and 8 a.m. Tue.