I went for a walk last night after dinner. It was around 8:30 p.m. I got as far as St. Francis, then it started to rain. And it hasn’t stopped since. That was nearly 12 hours ago. Looking out at Ylig Bay, it looks like chocolate milk running down from the hills and into the sea. The rain’s causing all sorts of erosion back up in the hills.
The governor declared Condition 1 at midnight last night, around the same time Tropical Storm 08W received a name. It is now Tropical Storm Saomai. Pretty name, and pretty tame so far. Nothing but rain, lots and lots of rain. Not a breath of wind this morning. I expect that to change later this morning as Saomai passes. According to the National Weather Service, Saomai is already close up on us. At 6:54 a.m. this morning the center of the storm was 13.9 N 144.9 E – That’s less than 35 miles (34.962 according to my math) northeast of where I live.
Here’s the latest from the National Weather Service:
GUZ001-002-003-004-052300- TROPICAL STORM SAOMAI LOCAL STATEMENT NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE TIYAN GU 700 AM GUAM LST SUN AUG 6 2006 ...TROPICAL STORM SAOMAI PASSING BETWEEN GUAM AND ROTA... ...AREAS AFFECTED... THIS STATEMENT RECOMMENDS ACTIONS TO BE TAKEN BY RESIDENTS OF THE MARIANA ISLANDS. ...WATCHES AND WARNINGS... A TROPICAL STORM WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT FOR GUAM...ROTA...TINIAN AND SAIPAN. TROPICAL STORM FORCE WINDS OF 39 MPH OR MORE ARE EXPECTED WITHIN 12 HOURS. ...STORM INFORMATION... AT 650 AM GUAM LST...2050Z...THE CENTER OF TROPICAL STORM SAOMAI WAS LOCATED BY RADAR NEAR LATITUDE 13.9 DEGREES NORTH AND LONGITUDE 144.9 DEGREES EAST. THIS IS ABOUT 35 MILES NORTH-NORTHEAST OF GUAM 25 MILES SOUTHWEST OF ROTA 90 MILES SOUTH-SOUTHWEST OF TINIAN 100 MILES SOUTH-SOUTHWEST OF SAIPAN. TROPICAL STORM SAOMAI IS MOVING NORTHWEST AT 16 MPH WITH MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS OF 50 MPH. TROPICAL STORM FORCE WINDS OF 39 MPH OR MORE EXTEND OUTWARD UP TO 60 MILES FROM THE CENTER. ...GUAM..ROTA..TINIAN AND SAIPAN... PREPARATIONS FOR DAMAGING WINDS SHOULD BE COMPLETED IF NOT DONE YET. KEEP OUTSIDE FURNITURE AND OTHER LOOSE OBJECTS SECURED. SMALL BOATS SHOULD REMAIN IN SAFE HAVEN. GUAM REMAINS IN CONDITION OF READINESS 1. ALL INBOUND AND OUTBOUND CONTINENTAL EXPRESS FLIGHTS HAVE BEEN CANCELED FOR TODAY. ALL OTHER FLIGHTS ARE SCHEDULED ON TIME. THE AIRPORT AUTHORITY CONTINUES TO OPERATE THE AIRPORT. FOR MORE INFORMATION...CONTACT THE JOINT INFORMATION CENTER AT 475-9701 THROUGH 9705. IN CNMI...ROTA REMAINS IN TROPICAL STORM CONDITION 1. TINIAN AND SAIPAN REMAIN IN TROPICAL STORM CONDITION 3. ...WIND INFORMATION... TROPICAL STORM FORCE WINDS ARE EXPECTED TODAY AND TONIGHT. BE PREPARED FOR MAXIMUM WINDS OF 50 MPH WITH HIGHER GUSTS. ...STORM SURGE AND SURF INFORMATION... SURF WILL HAZARDOUS AT 9 TO 12 FEET TODAY...AND CONTINUE AT HAZARDOUS LEVELS MONDAY AND TUESDAY. ...OTHER STORM EFFECTS... RAINFALL OF 6 INCHES OR MORE IS POSSIBLE THROUGH MONDAY. LOCAL FLOODING IS LIKELY TO OCCUR. ...NEXT UPDATE... THE NEXT LOCAL STATEMENT WILL BE ISSUED BY 9 AM GUAM LST. $$ AHN
So it’s right on top of us. Like I said, not a breath of wind so far. Just lucky I guess.
As always, here are the requisite links to the National Weather Service Office at Tiyan, the Joint Typhoon Warning Center in Honolulu, the latest NOAA GOES Satellite images, and a new one, Tropical Storm Risk, a storm tracking site from the University College of London. These links are also found on the blogroll.