Hurricane Update

Officials urge Guam to brace for strong typhoon with winds up to 155 mph

Bog note: And great earthquakes shall be in diverse places, and famines, and pestilences; and fearful sights and great signs shall there be from heaven. (Luke 21:11). Jesus is giving a series of prophecies about what to look for as the age of grace comes to a close. This verse from Luke is one of many such prophecies from throughout the Bible. 2017 was the worst year in recorded history for the intensity, frequency, severity, duration and occurrence of a large number of severe natural disasters worldwide. Earthquakes, volcanoes, hurricanes, typhoons, cyclones, torrential flooding, unprecedented wildfires in unusual places, devastating droughts, excessive/scorching heat setting records everywhere, record snowfalls in Europe and Russia. Snow in the Arabia. This list can go on. Most studied eschatologists believe these ‘fearful sights’ and massive natural disasters are all part of the ‘CONVERGENCE’ of signs that this Biblical and prophetic age is closing. Most people who study prophecy are familiar with the routine reference(s) made that these things will be like a woman having labor pains that occur in greater severity, frequency, size and duration prior to giving birth. End of note.

 Officials urge Guam to brace for strong typhoon with winds up to 155 mph

Jerick Sablan, Pacific Daily News. Published 9:57 a.m. ChT Sept. 7, 2018 | Updated 6:41 p.m. ChT Sept. 7, 2018.

National Weather Service Meteorologist Landon Aydlett said a potential typhoon tracking its way toward Guam could be the worst one since 2002. A tropical depression east of the Marianas is expected to intensify to a strong typhoon with winds that could approach 155 mph and pass over the island on Tuesday.

The island was hit by Supert yphoon Pongsona in December 2002. That typhoon brought sustained winds of 144 miles per hour and gusts to 173 mph, according to a Weather Service report. 

Aydlett said the current track shows Guam could be on typhoon watch as early as Sunday morning or afternoon and on typhoon warning by Monday. “This weekend is the time we need to prepare for a possibly category 3 or category 4 storm. This could be our worst hit since 2002,” he said during a briefing.  Gov. Eddie Calvo, in a special message Friday, urged residents to take precautions like clearing the yard of any debris and taking down canopies and similar items before Monday.

“This system is still developing so there is still uncertainty as to its exact track and strength. What we can say is that we could get some wind and rain by Monday,” Calvo said.  He also urged residents to stay informed for the latest updates for possible hazardous warnings that could proceed the tropical disturbance.

The current models forecast the system to impact Guam by Tuesday evening or early Wednesday, becoming a possible Category 3 or Category 4 typhoon, a release from Guam Homeland Security and Civil Defense states. A Category 3 is referred to as a “strong typhoon” with maxmium sustained winds of 111 miles per hour to 129 miles per hour and peak gusts of 140 mph to 164 mph, the release states. A Category 4 is referred to as a “very strong typhoon” with maximum sustained winds of 130 mph to 156 mph and peak gusts of 165 mph to 198 mph, the release states.

The problem posed by NWS is that the storm has enough time to significantly develop before reaching Guam and the projections may change as the intensity and conditions have the ability to worsen, the release states.  Coordination is underway between several government of Guam agencies to clear village drainage areas that pose a problem in heavy rains, the release states.  Plans are in place to open respective Guam Department of Education emergency shelters and preparation is also underway for pregnant mothers at the Guam Memorial Hospital, the release states.

More information will provided by Sunday, the release states. Plans are in place to move the government of Guam and Joint Region Marianas to Condition of Readiness 3 sometime Sunday. That’s subject to change, depending on the track of the storm. A team from the Federal Emergency Management Agency was expected to arrive on Guam Saturday in advance of the storm, and residents were advised to begin preparations.

On Friday evening, the tropical depression was about 1,470 miles east of Guam, a National Weather Service advisory stated.  There still is uncertainty as to the exact track and strength of the system, but impact should begin to be felt by Monday, with the system moving through the Marianas Monday night or Tuesday. Heavy showers, gusty winds and dangerous marine conditions are likely for at least parts of Guam and the Northern Mariana Islands early next week. The Coast Guard is urging the public to prepare by securing boats and heed all warnings.

The storm is expected to generate sustained winds approaching 155 mph with possible gusts of 190 mph throughout Guam and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, according to the Coast Guard release.  The Coast Guard is working closely with local and state first responder agencies and once the storm begins to impact the islands, emergency responders may not be able to assist those in danger, the release states. The public is urged to heed all orders and warnings. Mariners should seek safe harbor and shelter.

Additionally, mariners should secure their boats and boating equipment. Owners of large boats are urged to move their vessels to protected marinas where they will be less likely to break free of their moorings or to be otherwise damaged, the release states.  Smaller boats should be pulled from the water and stored in a place that is not prone to flooding and is protected for high winds. Regardless of location, all loose items aboard vessels should be secured or removed, the Coast Guard release states.

Visitors to Guam should heed all warnings from lifeguards and public health and safety officials. Although weather conditions may appear favorable, rip tides and high surf may impact beaches far in advance of the actual storm, the release states. Even the best swimmers can fall victim to strong storm-generated waves and currents, the release states.  Swimmers are urged to stay clear of beaches until local officials say the water is safe. Near-shore waters may become contaminated due to runoff up to several days following a storm, the release states.

FEMA team coming

According to a release from Guam Homeland Security/Office of Civil Defense, the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s Incident Management Assistance Team will deploy to Guam’s Emergency Operations Center to provide support as needed. The FEMA team is expected to arrive before any significant weather changes, the release stated.

Guam Homeland Security and Civil Defense have begun coordination with the governor’s office, government of Guam agencies, the military and federal partners to increase readiness, the release stated. A tropical storm watch is in effect for Enewetak, Marshall Islands, with a potential for damaging winds of 39 mph to 73 mph within the next 24 to 36 hours. There are no watches or warnings in effect for the Marianas, but this is expected to change through the weekend, the release stated.

Take precautions

Due to the uncertainty of exactly how close to Guam the disturbance will pass and the strength, it is advised to take precautionary actions now.  Stay up to date with the latest information. The storm track or intensity may change and advisories regarding flash flooding or dangerous seas may be issued. Locate or prepare emergency preparedness kits for your household. Stock up on non-perishable food items and water for your household, flashlights, first-aid kits, batteries, matches or lighters, portable stove, toiletries, etc. Visit for more information.

Secure important documents such as birth certificates, tax papers and insurance documents in a water-proof bag. Clear loose debris around your yard and store any items that may become airborne with heavy winds, before inclement weather arrives. Gas your vehicles and get fuel for your generators now while the weather is clear. All temporary signs, including those for political campaigns, advertisements and any other wooden or loosely placed signs should be taken down before Sunday. Loosely fitted items and signs have the ability to lift in heavy winds and cause damage to life and property. The community is advised to take these precautionary actions seriously, the release stated.  “The system has the possibility of taking a turn for the worst so the residents and visitors should take the time through the weekend to prepare,” the release states.

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