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Sunday, October 18, 2015

A new record set: Twin typhoons in the Pacific: Koppu (Lando) and Champi

Sou | 8:12 PM Go to the first of 7 comments. Add a comment

You probably know about Typhoon Koppu that is pummeling the Philippines as I write. Locally it's known as Lando. There's another one not far from it called Champi. Here's a picture from the Earth wind map:

Of the two, Koppu is the more destructive. It's stronger and is passing over densely populated areas in the Philippines. The central pressure still listed as a low 945hPa. This is the path from the Japan Meteorological Agency, moving slowly NNW:

Champi is listed as strong, rather than very strong, like Koppu. It's also moving slowly NNW, with the central pressure listed as a low 955hPa. From JMA:

The most recent reports I've seen from the ABC say that Koppu has displaced 15,000 people, but there are no casualties reported so far. It's moving slowly, and it's expected that there'll be very large waves and storm surges, as well as the rain and winds.

Koppu set a new record for the Pacific, according to Wunderground's Philip Klotzbach, bringing to 19 the number of Category 4 or 5 tropical cyclone this year in the Northern Hemisphere. I don't know if the 19 includes Champi, or if that brings it to 20.

Further reading

You can read more about the typhoons:


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. Nothing to see here: if they don't hit the USA then they don't exist, doncha know?

  3. The forecast called for 700mm of rain, up to 1000mm in the mountains.

    It took me a second to understand that 1000mm meant literally a meter. I haven't even seen a meter of *snow* fall in one storm -- I can't imagine a meter of rain. Most I've seen is 20cm, which was roughly double the previous record of just over 10cm (and had been set a week earlier).

  4. of course you realize that the records you are talking about is less than a century long of reliable global observation. otherwise you should only consider landfalls.

    1. Pulsar, the comprehensive record of Cat 4 and 5 is much shorter than a century. Records of tropical cyclones, particularly those that haven't made landfall, would not be reliable before satellites. Not the number of them, or the pressure or windspeed of those that were recorded would be reliable. It's hard enough getting max wind today (eg high winds tend to destroy anenometers). There'd probably not be a reliable record of cyclones that did make landfall. Only those that hit populated areas - and the strength of those older records wouldn't necessarily be accurate.

      From NOAA:

      It should be noted that prior to the weather satellite era (1961) many tropical cyclone life cycles could be underestimated.

    2. Exactly my point. New Record is almost meaningless in this context.

    3. No, pulsar. You implied that good records went back a century. They don't. They are only good for around half a century, if that.

      And your new point that the new record is meaningless is debatable. It will become part of any trend analysis, and whether this and the other recent records are outliers or not will become more apparent as the decades roll by. What it signals is that tropical cyclone trends bear watching.

      The scientific jury is still not in on whether tropical cyclones will increase with global warming later this century. However there is more agreement about intensity. More will be intense, most likely, but frequency is not known yet.


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