Caribbean 7.7 Quake: Two Terrible Myths And One Great Piece Of Advice

Shaken, not stirred.

As plenty of you have likely noticed, a rather powerful magnitude 7.7 earthquake took place underwater, 10 kilometres (6.2 miles) beneath the seafloor, northwest of Jamaica and south of Cuba on Tuesday 28th. What is for now the mainshock in the sequence – the most powerful in a series of earthquakes – the 7.7 temblor was intense enough for its shaking to be felt all over the region, even as far as Miami, 710 kilometres (441 miles) away from the epicentre.

A few hours later, a magnitude 6.5 quake took place a little closer to the Cayman Islands, likely a potent aftershock of the 7.7 mainshock. Plenty of aftershocks will continue to rock the region for several weeks or months, with a small but non-zero chance that an earthquake more powerful than the current mainshock may also take place in the area.

Fortunately, despite some infrastructural damage in spots around the region, and the initial tsunami warning, this turned out to be nothing close to a tragedy. Apart from the fact that this earthquake took place a decent enough distance from settlements, the fault that ruptured was a strike-slip variety, wherein one ‘block’ moves sideways with respect to another. This normally doesn’t permit the mass movement of significant volumes of water – i.e. a tsunami – although there are some exceptions to this. In this case, no such hazardous tsunami was reported anywhere.

As with all powerful earthquakes, a few myths and pieces of misinformation skittered about online shortly after it happened. Right at the end of 2019, I put together a piece outlining some of the commonest, aggravating and sometimes downright dangerous misconceptions about major geological events – and surprise surprise, several of them reared their heads yet again during yesterday’s earthquake and tsunami scare.

First misconception: “Wow, this earthquake took place really close to the ones afflicting Puerto Rico at the moment. They must be connected, and I bet they’re going to trigger all kinds of earthquakes now around the Ring of Fire!”

Nope. The Ring of Fire doesn’t overlap with any of the quakes or fault lines within the Caribbean Sea, which contains Puerto Rico, Cuba and Jamaica, along with a myriad of other islands and several of the shorelines of Central and South American countries. The Ring of Fire is over in the Pacific, not the Atlantic. So there’s that. At least get your geography right.

In any event, the Ring of Fire is silly. This loop, which surrounds much of the vast Pacific Ocean, features constantly shifting, sliding and grinding plate boundaries, all with their own network of segregated or closely spaced faults. This continuous activity means that 75 percent of the world’s (known) volcanic activity and 90 percent of the world’s earthquakes take place along it.

Once more, for the people at the back: none of the eruptions that take place on the Ring of Fire are related to each other. And for the most part, none of the earthquakes are either. (There is a chance that some earthquakes can trigger volcanic eruptions if they are literally right on top of one another, but this is a very contentious subject with no concrete answers available at present.) It is a designation that really doesn’t make sense, geologically speaking.

If two faults are close enough, a powerful earthquake on one can trigger an earthquake on another. In this case, the rule doesn’t apply, even though both earthquake sequences – Puerto Rico and Jamaica/Cuba/Cayman Islands – are taking place in the same sea. The general rule of thumb is that this triggering mechanism only applies when the second fault is no further away than three to four times the length of the original fault that ruptured.

As Caltech seismologist Lucy Jones took to Twitter to explain, the Puerto Rico mainshock took place on a 24-kilometre (15-mile)-long fault. That 7.7 quake yesterday was more than 1,300 kilometres (800 miles) away, or 53 times the distance of the fault that ruptured near Puerto Rico. There is no way these two earthquake sequences are connected.

Second misconception: “There are a lot of earthquakes happening around the world at the moment, right?”

Nope. Earthquakes happen around the world on all flavours of fault lines in an essentially randomised manner. Most never get reported on, because they are too weak to be felt or, even if they could be felt, are too far away from human populations to cause any damage, or at least any significant damage.

Puerto Rico’s earthquakes have been making the news because they have produced intense enough shaking to cause damage and some deaths. Yesterday’s earthquake made headlines because it was very powerful, close to major population centres, and came with a potential tsunami risk. If both happened in the middle of nowhere with no tsunami risk, they wouldn’t have made the news.

More powerful earthquakes also happen far less frequently than less powerful ones. In the past 24 hours alone, there have been 137 earthquakes detected coming in at or above a magnitude 1.5. In the past week? 1,350 of them. This is all completely normal, and the vast majority of these haven’t made the news. The ones that did were, once again, the powerful ones that may have, or did, pose a risk to human populations.

The Earth is rocking no more, or less, than it was a year, decade, century or millennium ago. Don’t let the way it’s reported in the media distort that set-in-stone fact.

Amidst all this bemusement, a piece of advice from Susan Hough, a seismologist with the U.S. Geological Survey, stood out. Even though there was no tsunami accompanying this latest Caribbean temblor, and even though there was unlikely to be one, if those on the shorelines felt strong shaking, they should – no matter what, even if there aren’t sirens or alerts – have headed to higher ground.

Tsunami warnings are not always that precise, nor are they able to be given with sufficient time to trigger appropriate evacuations. The lethal Sulawesi tsunami in Indonesia in 2018 occurred on another strike-slip fault within a bay; compared to deep-sea tsunamis, it was able to slam into densely populated coastlines within a fraction of the time. Earthquakes were detected the moment they occurred, but the unique geography of the narrow bay produced a far more devastating tsunami that the strike-slip rupture otherwise would have done. This underestimation by the local authorities was combined with another problem: several cellphone towers were downed due to the quake, meaning that tsunami alerts were not sent out to all vulnerable populations. Thousands of people perished that day.

Crucially, strong shaking was felt on several coastlines within the bay prior to the tsunami’s arrival. And thus the mantra still stands: no matter what warning you have or haven’t got, and no matter what anyone else around you is or isn’t doing, if you feel strong shaking on a beach, get to higher ground.

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Robin George Andrews is a doctor of experimental volcanology-turned-science journalist. He tends to write about the most extravagant of scientific tales, from eruptions and hurricanes to climate change and diamond-rich meteorites from destroyed alien worlds – but he’s always partial to a bit of pop culture science. Apart from Forbes, his work has appeared in The Atlantic, National Geographic, Scientific American, The New York Times, The Verge, Atlas Obscura, Gizmodo, WIRED and others. You can get in touch with him at

Source: Caribbean 7.7 Quake: Two Terrible Myths And One Great Piece Of Advice

Mystery Sounds From Storms Could Help Predict Tornadoes

Mysterious rumbles that herald tornadoes could one day be used to predict when and where they will strike, according to researchers.

Storms emit sounds before tornadoes form, but the signals at less than 20Hz are below the limit for human hearing. What causes these rumbles has also been a conundrum.

Now researchers said they have narrowed down the reasons for the sounds – an important factor in harnessing the knowledge to improve warnings.

“The three possibilities are core oscillations [in the tornado], pressure relaxation, and latent heat effects,” said Dr Brian Elbing, of Oklahoma State University, who is part of the team behind the research. “They are all possibilities because what we have seen is that the signal occurs before the tornado touches the ground, continues after it touches the ground, and then disappears some time after the tornado leaves the ground.”

The latest work was presented at the annual meeting of the American Physical Society’s Division of Fluid Dynamics in Seattle.

The low-frequency sound produced by tornadoes has been known about for several decades, but Elbing said a big problem has been a lack of understanding of what causes the sounds, and difficulties in unpicking them from a tornado and other aspects of the weather.

The subject has seen renewed interest in recent years, with Elbing saying it could prove particularly useful for hilly areas such as Dixie Alley, which stretches from Texas to North Carolina. “Infrasound doesn’t need line of sight like radar, so there is hope that this could significantly improve warnings in Dixie Alley where most deaths [from tornadoes] occur,” he said.

The team’s setup involves a microphone capable of picking up low-frequency sounds sealed inside a dome which has four openings at right angles to each other, each of which is attached to a hose. Three of these domes are arranged in an equilateral triangle, 60 metres away from each other.

The team say the setup allows them to filter out sounds from normal windand work out which direction the twister is travelling, while the signal itself offers an idea of the tornado’s size: a frequency of 1Hz indicates a very large tornado, while a 10Hz indicates a small one.

In their latest work, Elbing and colleagues reported a case in Oklahoma in which they were able to pick up audio clues eight minutes before the twister formed, with a clear signal detected four minutes before it hit the ground. That, they say, is important as the tornado was not picked up by radar.

“There is evidence that the amount of lead time before the tornado is dependent on how large the tornado is,” said Elbing, adding that low-frequency sounds have been detected up to two hours before a tornado forms. “This tornado we detected was very small, there was no warning issued for this tornado … which is why even a four-minute warning is a big deal.”

While the Oklahoma tornado was only 12 miles from the setup, Elbing said once the sound signal was better understood, the technique could be used over even greater distances.

“If we know the acoustic signature of a tornado, it is realistic to expect to detect a tornado from over 100 miles,” he said.

Dr Harold Brooks, a tornado expert at the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration who was not involved in the work, said many questions needed to be answered before the approach could be harnessed, including whether all tornadoes make such sounds, whether such sounds can be made from other storms, and how accurate the approach is.

“No system will be perfect so there will be errors of missed events and false alarms,” said Brooks, adding that it is also not clear how many microphone arrangements would be needed to offer good coverage, saying that since the approach was based on sound waves rather than light waves, a far smaller area can be examined by each system in a given time than for radar.

“At this point it is a really intriguing thing, but there is a lot more work that needs to be done in terms of a relatively large scale experiment to actually test it,” he said.

By: @NicolaKSDavis

Source: Mystery sounds from storms could help predict tornadoes

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Are your kids wondering: “Why are tornadoes so hard to predict?” This question came from Hai Ming, a 2nd Grader from the US. Like, share and vote on next week’s question here:

This Is How We’d All Die Instantly If The Sun Suddenly Went Supernova

As far as raw explosive power goes, no other cataclysm in the Universe is both as common and as destructive as a core-collapse supernova. In one brief event lasting only seconds, a runaway reaction causes a star to give off as much energy as our Sun will emit over its entire 10-12 billion year lifetime. While many supernovae have been observed both historically and since the invention of the telescope, humanity has never witnessed one up close.

Recently, the nearby red supergiant star, Betelgeuse, has started exhibiting interesting signs of dimming, leading some to suspect that it might be on the verge of going supernova. While our Sun isn’t massive enough to experience that same fate, it’s a fun and macabre thought experiment to imagine what would happen if it did. Yes, we’d all die in short order, but not from either the blast wave or from radiation. Instead, the neutrinos would get us first. Here’s how.

An animation sequence of the 17th century supernova in the constellation of Cassiopeia. This... [+] explosion, despite occurring in the Milky Way and about 60-70 years after 1604, could not be seen with the naked eye due to the intervening dust. Surrounding material plus continued emission of EM radiation both play a role in the remnant's continued illumination. A supernova is the typical fate for a star greater than about 10 solar masses, although there are some exceptions.

NASA, ESA, and the Hubble Heritage STScI/AURA)-ESA/Hubble Collaboration. Acknowledgement: Robert A. Fesen (Dartmouth College, USA) and James Long (ESA/Hubble)

A supernova — specifically, a core-collapse supernova — can only occur when a star many times more massive than our Sun runs out of nuclear fuel to burn in its core. All stars start off doing what our Sun does: fusing the most common element in the Universe, hydrogen, into helium through a series of chain reactions. During this part of a star’s life, it’s the radiation pressure from these nuclear fusion reactions that prevent the star’s interior from collapsing due to the enormous force of gravitation.

So what happens, then, when the star burns through all the hydrogen in its core? The radiation pressure drops and gravity starts to win in this titanic struggle, causing the core to contract. As it contracts, it heats up, and if the temperature can pass a certain critical threshold, the star will start fusing the next-lightest element in line, helium, to produce carbon.

This cutaway showcases the various regions of the surface and interior of the Sun, including the... [+] core, which is where nuclear fusion occurs. As time goes on, the helium-containing region in the core expands and the maximum temperature increases, causing the Sun's energy output to increase. When our Sun runs out of hydrogen fuel in the core, it will contract and heat up to a sufficient degree that helium fusion can begin.

Wikimedia Commons user Kelvinsong

This will occur in our own Sun some 5-to-7 billion years in the future, causing it to swell into a red giant. Our parent star will expand so much that Mercury, Venus, and possibly even Earth will be engulfed, but let’s instead imagine that we come up some clever plan to migrate our planet to a safe orbit, while mitigating the increased luminosity to prevent our planet from getting fried. This helium burning will last for hundreds of millions of years before our Sun runs out of helium and the core contracts and heats up once again.

For our Sun, that’s the end of the line, as we don’t have enough mass to move to the next stage and begin carbon fusion. In a star far more massive than our Sun, however, hydrogen-burning only takes millions of years to complete, and the helium-burning phase lasts merely hundreds of thousands of years. After that, the core’s contraction will enable carbon fusion to proceed, and things will move very quickly after that.

As it nears the end of its evolution, heavy elements produced by nuclear fusion inside the star are... [+] concentrated toward the center of the star. When the star explodes, the vast majority of the outer layers absorb neutrons rapidly, climbing the periodic table, and also get expelled back into the Universe where they participate in the next generation of star and planet formation.

NASA / CXC / S. Lee

Carbon fusion can produce elements such as oxygen, neon, and magnesium, but only takes hundreds of years to complete. When carbon becomes scarce in the core, it again contracts and heats up, leading to neon fusion (which lasts about a year), followed by oxygen fusion (lasting for a few months), and then silicon fusion (which lasts less than a day). In that final phase of silicon-burning, core temperatures can reach ~3 billion K, some 200 times the hottest temperatures currently found at the center of the Sun.

And then the critical moment occurs: the core runs out of silicon. Again, the pressure drops, but this time there’s nowhere to go. The elements that are produced from silicon fusion — elements like cobalt, nickel and iron — are more stable than the heavier elements that they’d conceivably fuse into. Instead, nothing there is capable of resisting gravitational collapse, and the core implodes.

Artist's illustration (left) of the interior of a massive star in the final stages, pre-supernova,... [+] of silicon-burning. (Silicon-burning is where iron, nickel, and cobalt form in the core.) A Chandra image (right) of the Cassiopeia A supernova remnant today shows elements like Iron (in blue), sulphur (green), and magnesium (red). We do not know whether all core-collapse supernovae follow the same pathway or not.

NASA/CXC/M.Weiss; X-ray: NASA/CXC/GSFC/U.Hwang & J.Laming

This is where the core-collapse supernova happens. A runaway fusion reaction occurs, producing what’s basically one giant atomic nucleus made of neutrons in the star’s core, while the outer layers have a tremendous amount of energy injected into them. The fusion reaction itself lasts for only around 10 seconds, liberating about 1044 Joules of energy, or the mass-equivalent (via Einstein’s E = mc2) of about 1027 kg: as much as you’d release by transforming two Saturns into pure energy.

That energy goes into a mix of radiation (photons), the kinetic energy of the material in the now-exploding stellar material, and neutrinos. All three of these are more than capable of ending any life that’s managed to survive on an orbiting planet up to that point, but the big question of how we’d all die if the Sun went supernova depends on the answer to one question: who gets there first?

The anatomy of a very massive star throughout its life, culminating in a Type II Supernova when the... [+] core runs out of nuclear fuel. The final stage of fusion is typically silicon-burning, producing iron and iron-like elements in the core for only a brief while before a supernova ensues. Many of the supernova remnants will lead to the formation of neutron stars, which can produce the greatest abundances of the heaviest elements of all by colliding and merging.

Nicole Rager Fuller/NSF

When the runaway fusion reaction occurs, the only delay in the light getting out comes from the fact that it’s produced in the core of this star, and the core is surrounded by the star’s outer layers. It takes a finite amount of time for that signal to propagate to the outermost surface of the star — the photosphere — where it’s then free to travel in a straight line at the speed of light.

As soon as it gets out, the radiation will scorch everything in its path, blowing the atmosphere (and any remaining ocean) clean off of the star-facing side of an Earth-like planet immediately, while the night side would last for seconds-to-minutes longer. The blast wave of the matter would follow soon afterwards, engulfing the remnants of our scorched world and quite possibly, dependent on the specifics of the explosion, destroying the planet entirely.


But any living creature would surely die even before the light or the blast wave from the supernova arrived; they’d never see their demise coming. Instead, the neutrinos — which interact with matter so rarely that an entire star, to them, functions like a pane of glass does to visible light — simply speed away omnidirectionally, from the moment of their creation, at speeds indistinguishable from the speed of light.

Moreover, neutrinos carry an enormous fraction of a supernova’s energy away: approximately 99% of it. In any given moment, with our paltry Sun emitting just ~4 × 1026 joules of energy each second, approximately 70 trillion (7 × 1013) neutrinos pass through your hand. The probability that they’ll interact is tiny, but occasionally it will happen, depositing the energy it carries into your body when it happens. Only a few neutrinos actually do this over the course of a typical day with our current Sun, but if it went supernova, the story would change dramatically.

A neutrino event, identifiable by the rings of Cerenkov radiation that show up along the... [+] photomultiplier tubes lining the detector walls, showcase the successful methodology of neutrino astronomy and leveraging the use of Cherenkov radiation. This image shows multiple events, and is part of the suite of experiments paving our way to a greater understanding of neutrinos. The neutrinos detected in 1987 marked the dawn of both neutrino astronomy as well as multi-messenger astronomy.

Super Kamiokande collaboration

When a supernova occurs, the neutrino flux increases by approximately a factor of 10 quadrillion (1016), while the energy-per-neutrino goes up by around a factor of 10, increasing the probability of a neutrino interacting with your body tremendously. When you work through the math, you’ll find that even with their extraordinary low probability of interaction, any living creature — from a single-celled organism to a complex human being — would be boiled from the inside out from neutrino interactions alone.

This is the scariest outcome imaginable, because you’d never see it coming. In 1987, we observed a supernova from 168,000 light-years away with both light and neutrinos. The neutrinos arrived at three different detectors across the world, spanning about 10 seconds from the earliest to the latest. The light from the supernova, however, didn’t begin arriving until hours later. By the time the first visual signatures arrived, everything on Earth would have already been vaporized for hours.

A supernova explosion enriches the surrounding interstellar medium with heavy elements. The outer... [+] rings are caused by previous ejecta, long before the final explosion. This explosion also emitted a huge variety of neutrinos, some of which made it all the way to Earth.

ESO / L. Calçada

Perhaps the scariest part of neutrinos is how there’s no good way to shield yourself from them. Even if you tried to block their path to you with lead, or a planet, or even a neutron star, more than 50% of the neutrinos would still get through. According to some estimates, not only would all life on an Earth-like planet be destroyed by neutrinos, but any life anywhere in a comparable solar system would meet that same fate, even out at the distance of Pluto, before the first light from the supernova ever arrived.

The only early detection system we’d ever be able to install to know something was coming is a sufficiently sensitive neutrino detector, which could detect the unique, surefire signatures of neutrinos generated from each of carbon, neon, oxygen, and silicon burning. We would know when each of these transitions happened, giving life a few hours to say their final goodbyes during the silicon-burning phase before the supernova occurred.

There are many natural neutrino signatures produced by stars and other processes in the Universe.... [+] Every set of neutrinos produced by a different fusion process inside a star will have a different spectral energy signature, enabling astronomers to determine whether their parent star is fusing carbon, oxygen, neon, and silicon in its interior, or not.

IceCube collaboration / NSF / University of Wisconsin

It’s horrifying to think that an event as fascinating and destructive as a supernova, despite all the spectacular effects it produces, would kill anything nearby before a single perceptible signal arrived, but that’s absolutely the case with neutrinos. Produced in the core of a supernova and carrying away 99% of its energy, all life on an Earth-like would receive a lethal dose of neutrinos within 1/20th of a second as every other location on the planet. No amount of shielding, even from being on the opposite side of the planet from the supernova, would help at all.

Whenever any star goes supernova, neutrinos are the first signal that can be detected from them, but by the time they arrive, it’s already too late. Even with how rarely they interact, they’d sterilize their entire solar system before the light or matter from the blast ever arrived. At the moment of a supernova’s ignition, the fate of death is sealed by the stealthiest killer of all: the elusive neutrino.

Follow me on Twitter. Check out my website or some of my other work here.

Ethan Siegel Ethan Siegel

I am a Ph.D. astrophysicist, author, and science communicator, who professes physics and astronomy at various colleges. I have won numerous awards for science writing since 2008 for my blog, Starts With A Bang, including the award for best science blog by the Institute of Physics. My two books, Treknology: The Science of Star Trek from Tricorders to Warp Drive, Beyond the Galaxy: How humanity looked beyond our Milky Way and discovered the entire Universe, are available for purchase at Amazon. Follow me on Twitter @startswithabang.

Source: This Is How We’d All Die Instantly If The Sun Suddenly Went Supernova

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Our Sun would never undergo a Supernova explosion. But what if it does? Video clips from NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center and ESA/Hubble Images by: ESA/NASA, Music: Olympus by Ross Budgen – Music ( ) Licensed under CC BY 4.0 International License We’re on Facebook: We’re on Instagram: Support us on Patreon.


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Tropical Storm Nestor expected to form on way to Florida Panhandle

A strengthening weather disturbance in the Gulf of Mexico was expected to intensify into Tropical or Subtropical Storm Nestor Friday before making landfall over the Florida Panhandle, bringing strong winds, storm surge flooding, heavy rainfall, and even the chance of tornadoes, according to the National Hurricane Center.

As of 11 a.m. ET, the system had maximum sustained winds of 60 mph, the hurricane center said.

After hitting the Panhandle, the system was then expected to track northeast through the weekend, pounding a swath from Georgia through the Carolinas with heavy rainfall and gusty winds.

Gale-force winds are possible along portions of the Atlantic coast of the southeastern United States by Saturday.

A risk of severe weather, including tornadoes, is also expected along parts of the Florida Gulf Coast late Friday and across northern and central Florida, southeast Georgia and the coastal Carolinas on Saturday, the Weather Channel said.

A cluster or line of strong to severe thunderstorms will likely push into northern Florida on Saturday morning, according to Weather Underground meteorologist Bob Henson. Tornadoes would be possible within this area, as well as in other thunderstorms and squall lines forming just to the east and northeast of Nestor as the storm tracks inland.

The system, labeled Potential Tropical Cyclone 16, was located early Friday about 395 miles southwest of Panama City, Florida, and was moving to the northeast at 22 mph.

Gov. Ron DeSantis, of Florida, warned on Twitter of the possibility of heavy rain and isolated tornadoes and called on residents to prepare for the chance of flooding and power outages.

A tropical storm warning was in effect from the Mississippi and Alabama border to Yankeetown, Florida, about 90 miles north of Tampa, and from Grand Isle, Louisiana to the mouth of the Pearl River.

View image on Twitter

A storm surge warning was also in effect from Indian Pass to Clearwater Beach, Florida. “A storm surge warning means there is a danger of life-threatening inundation from rising water moving inland from the coastline,” the hurricane center said.

High schools from Alabama to the eastern Florida Panhandle canceled or postponed football games scheduled for Friday night, and officials in Panama City tried to assure residents that the storm wouldn’t be a repeat of Category 5 Hurricane Michael last year.

Source: Tropical Storm Nestor expected to form on way to Florida Panhandle

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A disturbance in the southwestern Gulf of Mexico now has an 90 percent chance of development, and is expected to strengthen into Tropical or Subtropical Storm Nestor later tonight or Friday.


The Century’s Strongest Super-Typhoon Hagibis Is About To Hit Japan—1,600 Flights Canceled

The streets of Tokyo outside my window are currently getting a little quieter, but there is absolutely no sense of panic in Japan’s capital. Typhoons are common-place in Japan, and the infrastructure has been built to withstand regular storms each year.

There are two major sporting events in Japan this weekend; the Rugby World Cup which has now canceled two games. England versus France and Scotland versus Japan. The other major event is the Japanese Grand Prix, who have moved qualifying to Sunday, with the race going ahead almost immediately afterwards.

24-Hour Travel Disruption

The biggest impact will likely be on flights. The eye of the storm is 55 miles wide alone, and satellite imagery shows the entire storm is currently larger than the entire nation of Japan. Hagibis will be one of the strongest typhoons to directly hit the island nation in decades.

Today In: Lifestyle

All Nippon Airways have now canceled all domestic flights departing from Tokyo on Saturday. The capital looks set to receive a direct hit from the storm but no one in the capital seems to be too concerned at this point. Although the Meteorological Agency has classified the storm as “violent”—the highest strength categorisation—rail operators have so far only warned that there may be cancellations.

With a storm this size, or any major storm, safety is paramount, however, Japanese authorities seem confident with their planning preparations. Japan Airlines have followed ANA’s example and canceled 90% of domestic flights, yet both airlines are optimistic of early morning departures on Saturday which remain scheduled until 8am. Additionally, both airlines are hopeful that some international flights will resume by late Saturday evening.

Tokyo airports have been worst affected by the disruption, with both major Japanese carriers, ANA and JAL, canceling 558 and 540 flights respectively. Flight cancellations are being seen around the globe to and from Tokyo, with British Airways scraping flights from London, and flights to North America also being affected. Almost every major airline around the world has been impacted by one of the largest storms to ever hit Japan directly, but the feeling on the ground here is that disruption shouldn’t last beyond a 24-hour window.

What Makes Typhoon Hagibis Different?

The Size:

Storm Hagibis’ has a diameter that covers an immense 1,400km. Until the very last moment, no-one or nowhere in vast areas of Japan is safe from this expansive storm.

The Time Of The Month: This weekend is a full moon, meaning that sea levels are higher than average. With potential storm surge and waves being predicted to be up to 13m in some areas, coastal flooding could be devastating.

Force: With wind gusts predicted to be over 240km/h, and a direct hit to Tokyo looking increasingly likely over the next few hours, Typhoon Hagibis could be one of the strongest storms to hit Japan in decades.

In terms of pressure, Hagibis could also be the strongest on record, ever. With a current pressure of 900 hPa, this is already lower than hurricane Dorian which devastated the Bahamas earlier this year, clocking in at a pressure of 910 hPa. The strongest Tropical Cyclone ever recorded was Typhoon Tip which reached 870 hPa and made landfall in the Philippines in 1979. All Japanese airlines suggest checking their websites before travelling tomorrow.

I spend 360 days a year on the road traveling for work discovering new experiences at every turn, trying out the best and the worst airlines around the world. I set the Guinness World record for being the youngest person to travel to all 196 countries in the world by the age of 25, and you could perhaps say I caught the travel bug over that 6-year journey. I now take over 100 flights every year and I am still discovering many new places, both good and bad, whilst writing about my experiences along the way. In addition to rediscovering known destinations, I visit some of the World’s least frequented regions such as Yemen to highlight untold stories. Join me on an adventure from economy to first-class flights, the best and worst airports, and from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe.

Source: The Century’s Strongest Super-Typhoon Hagibis Is About To Hit Japan—1,600 Flights Canceled

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Japan is bracing for what is expected to be the most powerful storm in decades. Typhoon Hagibis is advancing north towards Japan’s main island of Honshu, with damaging winds and torrential rain. Subscribe to our channel here: Subscribe to our news service on Telegram: Follow us: CNA: CNA Lifestyle: Facebook: Instagram:… Twitter:
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