New storms may form over Pa­cific this week­end: CWB

The China Post - - LOCAL -

Two trop­i­cal de­pres­sions could turn into storms over the Pa­cific this week­end, but only one of them would likely have a sub­stan­tial im­pact on Tai­wan, the Cen­tral Weather Bureau said Fri­day.

As of 4 p.m., the trop­i­cal de­pres­sion that could threaten Tai­wan is cen­tered 3,300 kilo­me­ters east-south­east of the is­land, mov­ing west at a speed of 15 kilo­me­ters per hour.

The Joint Typhoon Warn­ing Cen­ter ex­pects it to pass just north of Saipan on Mon­day.

The other de­pres­sion is cen­tered 4,500 kilo­me­ters east­south­east of Tai­wan and about 600 kilo­me­ters south­west of the Wake Is­land Group. It has shown lit­tle move­ment so far.

They are both pack­ing max­i­mum sus­tained winds of 54 kph, ap­proach­ing the thresh­old for a trop­i­cal storm of sus­tained winds of 62 kph, ac­cord­ing to bureau data.

Only the first storm could threaten Tai­wan, how­ever, fore­cast­ers said, adding that it could move to an area just south of Ok­i­nawa by Aug. 21.

The of­fi­cial forecast par­tially cor­rob­o­rated a con­tro­ver­sial pre­dic­tion made by Next TV weath­er­man Lee Fu-cheng ear­lier this week, who said two storms could form by the week­end.

He said the storms, which could de­velop into strong typhoons, might start af­fect­ing Tai­wan as early as Aug. 21 and fol­low sim­i­lar paths to Typhoon Soude­lor, which lashed Tai­wan on Aug. 8 and left eight dead and nearly 450 in­jured in Tai­wan.

The weather bureau blasted Lee as ir­re­spon­si­ble, ac­cus­ing him of be­ing alarmist, and CWB chief Shin Tzay-chyn said at the time that it was too early to make such pre­dic­tions.

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