The supertyphoon that wasn’t
Typically bad weather screws up weekend plans but this wasn’t an ordinary weekend. This was a 4 day holiday weekend for Moon Festival. This was also no ordinary typhoon. It was a supertyphoon that was expected to pass just south of Taiwan. Nobody was expecting a devastating direct hit but typhoons are unpredictable and they can be devastating even if they don’t directly hit you. Two weeks ago Kaohsiung received 500mm’s of rain from a faraway category 1 typhoon. Supertyphoons of course are the most devastating. To give some sort of reference category 5 supertyphoons have wind speeds >250 km/hr (>157 mi/hr). Combine that with up to a meter of rain and everyone is at risk. Even those in very safe 14th floor apartments.
Unlike many that had already made travel plans I stocked up on essential supplies like wine, chocolate muffins (gluten free) and fruit and planned for a long weekend bunkered in my apartment. This was already the plan since I’m almost finished with a giant summer project and this waterfall hunter will be released in a few weeks.
In the end however Supertyphoon Usagi stayed well south of Taiwan and it has been almost disappointingly calm today. Kenting and Taidong received some rain and had high winds but nothing incredibly scary as far as I have heard. This of course won’t be true for Hong Kong which is expected to be hit by a reduced strength (still category 2/3) Typhoon Usagi on Monday.
A satellite image from 24 hours ago (9/20 15:30) with the suprtyphoon bearing down on Taiwan. The width of the storm is 4 times the length of Taiwan but the northern part of the storm has not been as devastating as expected.