October 28th, 2010

Typhoon Chaba

Posted at 9:50 AM ET

chaba-smallChaba developed on October 21 to become the 15th named storm of the West Pacific typhoon season, and is currently located approximately 145 miles (235 kilometers) southeast of Okinawa in Japan, according to the Joint Typhoon Warning Center (JTWC). The storm has strengthened since its formation and became the eighth typhoon of the season on October 25. Chaba currently packs sustained winds of around 132 mph (215 kmph), equivalent to a category 4 typhoon, but the storm is expected to begin to weaken over the next 24 hours. Chaba is tracking northeast at 9 mph (15 kmph) and the JTWC currently expects the storm to pass to the east of the Ryukyu Islands later today before heading towards the Japanese mainland. The JTWC said typhoon-force winds currently extend around 50 miles (80 kilometers) from the center of the storm while tropical storm-force winds extend around 215 miles (345 kilometers).

According to the JTWC, Chaba is expected to pass around 120 miles (195 kilometers) to the east of the Ryukyu Islands today, subjecting the region to tropical storm-force winds and storm surges. Reports said the island chain, consisting of Okinawa and Amami, could also see up to 8 inches (200 millimeters) of rainfall during the storm’s passage. Residents on the Amami island chain have been alerted to the threat of landslides after they were battered by torrential rain last week that flooded wide areas and left at least three people dead. However, wind damage in the region is expected to be limited since the Chaba’s strongest winds are located offshore to the east of its center, and EQECAT projects insured losses of less than USD100 million across the island chain.

chaba-big

Hazard data illustrated in the CAT-i map was taken from i-aXs®, Guy Carpenter’s web-based risk management platform. i-aXs users can view impacted areas on any map as well as see how their portfolios were affected. Please contact your broker or Instrat® representative for assistance or go to www.i-axs.info for further information.

In the longer term, Chaba is forecast to maintain its northeast motion over the next 48 hours, before shifting to a more east-northeasterly direction that is expected to see the storm skirt southern Honshu over the weekend. The JTWC’s latest forecast indicates Chaba will weaken over the next 48 hours and become a category 1 typhoon as it approaches southern Honshu. Current forecasts show the storm either hitting or skirting Chiba Prefecture on October 30 as a category 1 typhoon. Although there is significant uncertainty associated with the forecast track, Chaba is currently expected to pass around 50 miles (80 kilometers) south-southwest of Tokyo, bringing tropical storm-force winds and heavy rain to the capital and other southern areas. Guy Carpenter will continue to closely monitor Chaba’s progress and update this bulletin if there is significant damage to report from the storm.

Sources: Joint Typhoon Warning Center, WSI, Mainichi Daily News, Agence France Presse, Kyodo News

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Guy Carpenter’s Instrat® department provides CAT-i reports for major natural catastrophes worldwide. These reports cover catastrophes including worldwide tropical cyclones, earthquakes, major UK and European floods and any other natural event that is likely to incur a significant loss to the (re)insurance industry. Please email CAT.i@guycarp.com if you wish to be added to the free email distribution list.

Instrat also provides RISK-i reports for major technological or man-made events worldwide. These reports cover risks to property, transport and life including explosions, fires, crashes, engineering disasters and terrorist attacks that are likely to incur a significant loss to the (re)insurance industry. Please email RISK.i@guycarp.com if you wish to be added to the free email distribution list.

Hazard data illustrated in the CAT-i map was taken from i-aXs®, Guy Carpenter’s web-based risk management platform. i-aXs users can view impacted areas on any map as well as see how their portfolios were affected. Please contact your broker or Instrat® representative for assistance or go to www.i-axs.info for further information.

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