The strongest storm on Earth right now is heading for Japan

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UPDATE: Oct. 22, 2017, 11:21 a.m. PDT 

Typhoon Lan made landfall near Tokyo on Sunday afternoon eastern time, as a Category 2 storm. Winds at Tokyo’s Narita International Airport reached typhoon intensity of 75 mph, and heavy rain fell far from the storm’s center. Fears of flooding and landslides led to warnings in mountainous areas, as the storm raced toward the North Pacific.


Super Typhoon Lan has been undergoing rapid intensification on Thursday night and Friday, and may reach Category 5 intensity by Saturday morning. The storm had maximum sustained winds of 150 miles per hour as of Friday afternoon, eastern time, and was still slowly intensifying.

Super Typhoon Lan is in a favorable environment for strengthening, and is likely on a collision course with highly populated areas of Japan while in a weaker, but still formidable state.

One characteristic of this storm that’s clear from satellite imagery is that it has developed a massive eye about 50 miles in diameter. To put that into perspective, if you put the center of the storm on top of Manhattan, it would encompass parts of New Jersey, the lower Hudson Valley of New York, southwestern Connecticut, and western Long Island.

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