TOKYO – Powerful typhoon Hinnamnor brought strong winds to the southern Japan prefecture of Okinawa on Thursday as it regained strength while moving near the island region.
The Japan Meteorological Agency raised the classification of the storm to "violent" in the morning after downgrading it to "very strong" on Wednesday evening, warning of strong gusts and high tides in Okinawa.
The typhoon, the 11th of the season, was expected to move slowly south of Okinawa before moving north and nearing the island prefecture around Saturday and Sunday.
The agency forecast winds of up to 108 kilometers per hour for Okinawa on Friday and up to 252 kph on Saturday with swells of up to seven meters on Friday and over nine meters on Saturday.
As of 9 a.m., Thursday, the typhoon was about 250 km south of Miyako Island, moving southwest at 25 kph. It had an atmospheric pressure of 920 hectopascals at its center and was packing winds of up to 270 kph, according to the agency.
Yonhap, the state weather agency of South Korea, on Thursday reported that “Hinnamnor” is approaching the Korean Peninsula, and the southern resort island of Jeju may come under its direct influence early next week. (Kyodo with reports from Yonhap)