Typhoon Kong-rey is weakening as it approaches the Ryukyu Islands early (local time) on Thursday, October 4. As of early on Thursday morning (local time), Kong-rey was located near 22.4°N, 128.1°E, packing maximum sustained winds of 167 km/h (104 mph), equivalent to a Category 3 hurricane - a decrease from Tuesday, October 2, when the storm exhibited wind speeds equivalent to that of a Category 5 hurricane. Kong-rey's wind speeds are forecast to continue to weaken as it tracks further north and east over the coming days.
The islands of Miyako and Okinawa within Japan's Ryukyu chain are expected to be the most severely affected by the storm through Friday, October 5. High winds and heavy rainfall totaling 10-20 cm (4-8 in) are forecast for southern South Korea from Friday night into Sunday, October 7, after the storm begins to track northeastward. Parts of Kyushu and Shikoku may receive rainfall totals up to 12.5 cm (5 in) from Thursday into Saturday, October 6, and wind speeds of over 80 km/h (50 mph) are forecast for western Kyushu and southwestern Honshu on Saturday.
Consequent localized flooding, transportation disruptions, and power outages are possible in affected areas of Japan and South Korea over the coming days.
Tropical cyclones and typhoons are common in the west Pacific from June through November.
Individuals in the affected areas should monitor local weather reports, anticipate transportation and power disruptions, and obey instructions from local authorities.
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