Typhoon Hagibis closing in on Japan and the busy capital Tokyo. The monstrous storm is expected to make full landfall on Saturday as the country braces for life-threatening conditions. More than three million people have been advised to evacuate as the storm looks set to break records.
Typhoon Hagibis at a glance
- Typhoon Hagibis, which means 'speed', is due to make landfall on Japan’s main island of Honshu late on Saturday but the outer bands have begun to hit.
- The strongest storm to hit the region this century, Hagibis is packing maximum sustained winds of 111mph (180km/h) and is bringing waves of up to 40 feet (12 metres).
- Wide areas across eastern, western and northern Japan will be affected by strong winds, storm surges, torrential and sustained heavy rain and the risk of floods and landslides.
- More than 500,000 people have been evacuated and one death has been reported.
- More than 1,600 flights have been cancelled and train operators warned of major disruptions.
- Formula 1 has cancelled all activities at the Japanese Grand Prix on Saturday and two Rugby World Cup matches have been cancelled.
- Prime Minister Shinzo Abe requested his Cabinet to take all measures to prepare for Typhoon Hagibis.
23.45pm update: Namibia v Canada cancelled due to storm
The Namibia v Canada clash has been cancelled in Kamaishi following Typhoon Hagibis.
However, Rugby World Cup organisers are confident that Sunday's other matches will go ahead.
A statement on rugbyworldcup.com read: "Kamaishi is situated in a highly mountainous area, including mountains directly behind the main stand of the stadium.
"There have been landslides and flooding in the vicinity of the stadium and along access roads to the venue following torrential rain throughout the night.
"The safety of all involved in Rugby World Cup 2019 is our primary consideration and fans are advised not to travel to Kamaishi or the venue, which will be closed."
10.23pm update: Evacuation orders issued to more than 800,000 households
Evacuation orders were issued to more than 800,000 in Tokyo on Saturday as Hagibis threatened power cuts and widespread flooding.
9.37pm update: Sea levels raise by more than a metre
Storm surges and high waves have raised sea levels by more than a metre along some stretches of the Japanese coast.
Waters in Tokyo Bay are up by 50cm, increasing the danger of severe flooding in the city centre.
8.43pm update: Japan v Scotland latest
Typhoon Hagibis hit Japan as one of the most ferocious weather events in the country’s recent history battered parts of the country.
The Rugby World Cup has been disrupted with two matches cancelled.
Sunday’s clash between Japan and Scotland in Yokohama could yet be called off depending on the destruction caused by Hagibis.
Scotland need the match to go ahead to stand any chance of progressing from the group.
World Rugby is expected to make a decision in the early hours of Sunday morning.
8.15pm: Two dead and nine missing
Record-breaking rains battered Tokyo and large swaths of central and eastern Japan on Saturday evening, leaving two people dead and nine missing after several rivers burst their banks and landslides buried houses.
Typhoon Hagibis dropped rain on Tokyo, one of the world’s most densely populated urban areas, for hours.
Tens of millions of people trapped indoors watching with concern as rivers filled to dangerous levels.
6.34pm update: Timing of Hagibis makes impact worse
Typhoon Hagibis has hit at the time of a full moon. That means sea levels are higher than average.
With potential storm surge and waves being predicted to be up to 13m in some areas, coastal flooding could be devastating.
5.46pm update: Hagibis could be strongest on record, ever
In terms of pressure, Typhoon Hagibis could be the strongest on record, ever.
With a current pressure of 900 hPa, this is already lower than Hurricane Dorian, clocking in at a pressure of 910 hPa.
The strongest Tropical Cyclone ever recorded was Typhoon Tip which reached 870 hPa and made landfall in the Philippines in 1979.
5.23pm update: Seven millions told to evacuate
More than seven million people have been told to evacuate as Typhoon Hagibis hit Japan with the heaviest rain and winds in 60 years.
Hagibis has maximum sustained winds of up to 111mph and up to 30 inches of rain could be unleashed before it blows out to sea.
4.43pm update: Two confirmed dead
Typhoon Hagibis has already claimed two lives, including a a man who died when his car overturned in a tornado east of Tokyo.
Five others were injured when gales tore the roofs off a number of homes.
4.03pm update: Princess Anne carries on working in Tokyo despite typhoon
Princess Anne is maintaining a full diary during her visit to Japan.
The Princess Royal is in Tokyo and has had a busy day where she conducted a number of engagements.
It is thought that The Queen’s daughter is now safely bolted away ahead of the typhoon which is expected to strike Tokyo very shortly.
Amalie Henden takes over live reporting from Kate Whitfield.
3.10pm update: #PrayforJapan trending globally
The hashtag 'pray for Japan' has begun trending on social media as the world waits to hear how Japan has fared in the wake of Typhoon Hagibis.
2.45pm update: Three missing as number of injured rises
Three people are missing after a landslide in Gunma and flooding in Shizuoka.
More than 60 have been reported injured, including a large number of children.
2.25pm: Japan warned not to be 'lulled into false sense of security'
Experts warned that Tokyo, while long conditioned to prepare for earthquakes, was vulnerable to flooding.
Tokyo, where 1.5 million people live below sea level, is prone to damage from storm surges, Nobuyuki Tsuchiya, director of the Japan Riverfront Research Center, said.
He said: "We are heading towards high tide. If the typhoon hits Tokyo when the tide is high, that could cause storm surges and that would be the scariest scenario,.
"People in Tokyo have been in a false sense of security."
2pm update: Stories from inside the evacuation shelters
Yuka Ikemura, a 24-year-old nursery school teacher, is sheltering in a facility at a community centre in Edogawa in eastern Tokyo with her three-year-old son, eight-month-old daughter and their pet rabbit.
She said she decided to move before it was too late: "I've got small children to take care of and we live on the first floor of an old apartment.
"We brought with us the bare necessities. I'm scared to think about when we will have run out diapers and milk."
1.15pm update: When will the typhoon move away?
According to the latest forecast from the JMA, Japan won't have relief from Typhoon Hagibis until Sunday evening.
The massive storm is moving in a north-northeasterly direction at 20mph (35km/h).
While the eye will move off the mainland in the early hours of Sunday morning, the outer bands still pose a serious threat throughout the weekend.
12.45pm update: The eye hits Tokyo
The eye of Typhoon Hagibis has struck Tokyo, bringing devastating winds, rain and storm surge.
Japan's Meteorological Agency (JMA) issued the highest warning on Saturday, an “Emergency Weather Warning (Level 5)”, as the storm’s approach left one person dead and several injured.
The warning was issued for towns and cities in prefectures including Tokyo Saitama, Kanagawa, Gunma, Yamanashi, Nagano and Shizuoka.
A JMA weather forecaster said: “It is a level 5 situation; some sort of disaster may have already taken place.
“People are strongly advised to act to protect their lives right away.”
12.20pm update: "Take all measures necessary to save your life"
Meteorological agency official Yasushi Kajihara has issued a stern warning as the storm thrashes Japan.
He said: "Be ready for rainfall of the kind that you have never experienced."
He added areas usually safe from disasters may prove vulnerable.
"Take all measures necessary to save your life," he said.
12pm update: Japan's robust warning system kicks in as landfall one hour away
The death toll from the Typhoon Hagibis is unlikely to be anywhere near as high as 1958's Kanogawa Typhoon due to Japan’s stringent building safety standards and comprehensive disaster warning systems.
Emergency alerts accompanied by loud chimes are being sent directly to tens of millions of smartphones in the affected areas.
The centre of the storm is expected to hit Tokyo at about 9pm local time (1pm BST) on Saturday.
11.30am update: Was the earthquake caused by the typhoon?
According to studies by scientists at the University of Miami, major tropical storms can cause earthquakes.
However, the research showed a strong relationship between these two hazards where a large earthquake occurred within four years after a very wet tropical cyclone season - not while a typhoon was occurring.
So chances are this recent earthquake striking Japan at the same time as a typhoon is just a coincidence - or very bad luck.
11am update: BREAKING: Magnitude 5.7 earthquake hits Kanto region, reports of tremors in Tokyo
A magnitude 5.7 earthquake has been recorded just off the Japanese coast neat the Kanto region, with at least 60 reports already in from the immediate Tokyo region.
The USGS reported the quake at a depth of 59.5 metres below the surface, and no tsunami warning has yet been issued.
One Twitter user wrote: "#Earthquake in #Japan just now! My whole hotel shook in #Tokyo. News say 5.7 magnitude, no risk for tsunami. This in addition to very strong #TyphoonHagibis about to make landfall."
Another said: "I thought it was the strong wind that was causing the shaking and creaking. It was actually a magnitude 5.7 earthquake. Not only do I get to experience a Japan supertyphoon, I got to experience an earthquake, as well. Both at the same time. #PrayForJapan"
10.45am update: Devastation as Hagibis engulfs Japan
Residents have shared images of the violence of Typhoon Hagibis as it hits.
Intense winds and flooding have hit, with some areas already flooded, tens of thousands of homes without power, and one person dead.
Winds of 111mph (180km/h) could cause further flooding and landslides, the Japan Meteorological Agency has warned.
10.30am update: Typhoon Hagibis turns the sky purple
Residents have taken to social media to share images of a purple sky as Hagibis closes in.
Read HERE for the science behind this phenomenon known as 'scattering'.
いっぱいとった pic.twitter.com/QfFNexSpn4— メスゴリラ (@ika_mesugorira) October 11, 2019
10am update: Record-breaking rainfall already recorded in Tokyo
Typhoon Hagibi has already brought record-breaking rainfall in Kanagawa prefecture south of Tokyo with a whopping 27.6 inches (700mm) of rain over 24 hours.
9.30am update: Evacuee number hits one million as damage grows
The number of citizens evacuated due to the approach of Typhoon Hagibis has reached one million, local media is reporting.
More than 16,000 homes have already has power knocked out, while tornadoes whipped through Honshu ahead of the storm, wreaking havoc (see pictures below).
9.15am update: Latest path map from the Joint Typhoon Warning Centre and satellite images:
8.50am: Fears build of history repeating itself
There are fears Typhoon Hagibis could match the fury of the 1958 Kanogawa Typhoon, one of the deadliest on record, which killed more than 1,200 people when it hit Japan’s Shizuoka Prefecture.
With the worst-hit areas of the Honshu island set to be deluged by close to three feet of rain in a 24-hour period, the Japan Meteorological Agency has issued emergency warnings of flooding, mudslides and storm surge as high as 42 feet along the coast. Tokyo is predicted to see two feet of downpour.
8.20am update: First death reported
A man in his forties was killed in an overturned car early on Saturday in Chiba prefecture east of Tokyo, where high winds were reported, according to public broadcaster NHK.
It said four other people were injured when roofs were blown off houses in the prefecture, which was hit hard by typhoon Faxai a month ago.
The eye of the storm is due to make landfall later on Saturday, but the outer bands of the enormous storm have begun closing in.
5.45am update: Over 7,000 homes without power across Tokyo
More than 7,000 homes in Tokyo were left without power due to the deadly typhoon.
Mobile phone companies are reportedly offering free Wifi services.
5.00am update: Japanese government on full alert as Typhoon approaches the coast
Government officials are reportedly monitoring the situation across Japan as the typhoon approaches.
A talk force has been set up with about 17,000 defence forces personnel.
They are on alert in case of any rescue operations.
3.00am update: Thousands of homes without power as deadly Typhoon Hagibis approaches
More than 27,000 homes have allegedly been left without power in Chiba as the typhoon approaches.
Reportedly, there have also been blackouts.
2.45am update: People injured including children as "tornadoes" strike the city of Chiba
Four people have reportedly been injured, including children, after "tornadoes" struck Ichihara City, Chiba.
One house has been severely damaged and a car has been overturned, according to local news.
Glass windows were smashed in the public hall where evacuees were sheltering after leaving their homes.
2.10am update: Tornadoes spotted near Tokyo
Tornadoes have now been spotted near the capital city of Tokyo just hours before the eye of the storm is meant to hit the nation.
Evacuation orders have been issued in certain areas.
1.34am update: Typhoon continues path towards eastern Japan
So far, Japan is experiencing heavy rain but as the typhoon makes its way towards the nation, winds will strengthen.
Videos on social media are emerging of of huge waves crashing against rocks on the country’s coastline.
The storm’s speed will reach roughly 175 kph and is likely to make landfall over Suzuka and Tokyo.
23.17pm update: Bullet remains and Disneyland are closed
East Japan Railway will suspend regular train services in the capital.
The services will resume Sunday afternoon, but delays could be possible depending on the storm’s damage.
Tokyo’s Disneyland will also be closed on Saturday.
10.03pm update: Formula 1 has cancelled all activities on Japanese Grand Prix
Formula 1 has cancelled all events on Saturday as the typhoon nears.
The qualifying and race on Sunday are still scheduled to take place.
Valtteri Bottas led Lewis Hamilton to a Mercedes one-two in second practice and those results could decide the grid if conditions are too difficult to hold qualifying on Sunday morning.
9.21pm update: Typhoon Hagibis has taken aim at Japan
Typhoon Hagibis is expected to bring record-breaking rain and winds to the Tokai and Kanto regions, including Tokyo according to the Japan Meteorological Agency.
The agency added that the storm is packing winds of 101mph (162kmh) near the centre and has gusts of 145mph (234kmh).
8.19pm update: Expert speaks out about how climate change is an issue for sport
Climate change expert Piers Forster says sport has to make changes or risk more shambolic events.
7.02pm update: Japan Meteorological Agency update
As of 2am JST (6pm BST) the storm was located near latitude 30.6 longitude 137.0 and was moving northwards at 11.5mph.
The storm has wind speeds of 104mph near the centre and 150mph wind gusts.
5.34pm update: Residents across Japan are preparing for the storm to hit
Residents are preparing for the storm to hit, using tape and sandbags to protect their homes.
Many people hae also boarded up their windows in order to protect them.
4.21pm update: Foreign ministries issue warning for travel to Japan
Several foreign ministries have issued travel warnings for their countries nationals.
Now Japanese authorities have also announced that travellrs should check the following web pages before travelling:
2.51pm update: Massive Typhoon Hagibis bears down on central Japan
Hagibis will likely make landfall in central or eastern Honshu over the weekend.
Railways and supermarkets have announced plans to suspend or minimize operations for much of Saturday.
The Japan Meteorological Agency said Typhoon Hagibis was projected to hit either the Tokai region or the Kanto region on Saturday evening or later.
It will then grind its way north through Tohoku.
2.17pm update: Emergency warnings ‘likely’ on Friday
Japan’s Meteorological Agency official Yasushi Kajihara said it may issue an emergency warning on Friday.
This because Hagibis is likely to bring strong winds and high waves, as well as record heavy rainfall over wide areas.
Mr Kajihara called on people to evacuate as quickly as possible to protect their lives.
He said violent winds and rough seas are expected in wide areas, mainly in eastern Japan, from Saturday through Sunday.
1.15pm update: Record rainfall could lead to more deaths than Typhoon Kanogawa in 1958
Japan’s Meteorological Agency official Yasushi Kajihara said winds could reach record speeds in some places this weekend.
He also added Hagibis could bring rainfall on the same level as the “Kanogawa Typhoon” of 1958.
Kanogawa left more than 1,200 people dead or missing in Shizuoka and the Kanto region.
Mr Kajihara also warned the entire nation to be on the alert for violent winds, high waves, flooding in low-lying areas, swollen rivers and storm surges.