Tropical Storm “Bebinca” over China’s Leizhou Peninsula, landfall in Vietnam expected on August 17

Tropical Storm “Bebinca” continues dropping heavy rain on the Chinese island of Hainan and neighboring region. Its first landfall is expected over the Leizhou Peninsula in the South China Sea, Guangdong Province on August 15 and the second in northern Vietnam on August 17.

Bebinca formed over the South China Sea on August 12 close to the coastal areas of Macau and started moving east as a tropical depression. Over the next 24 hours, it turned toward the northwest heading toward the coastal areas of China’s Guangdong province, threatening the region with heavy rain and strong winds.

At 00:00 UTC on August 14, its center was located 130 km (80 miles) south of Macau and it had maximum sustained winds of 74 km/h (46 mph).

At 15:00 UTC on August 15, Bebinca’s center was located 370 km (230 miles) SW of Hong Kong and just east of Leizhou Peninsula. Its maximum sustained winds were 65 km/h (40 mph) with gusts to 85 km/h (53 mph) and estimated central pressure 990 hPa. The system was moving W at a speed of 11 km/h (7 mph).

China’s national observatory issued a yellow alert (2 of 4) and suggested local governments to prepare for possible disasters. Ships in affected areas were suggested to return to port and residents along the typhoon’s path to stay indoors.

After passing over the Leizhou Peninsula over the next 12 hours, Bebinca will enter lower vertical wind shear opening a favorable period for intesification (24 – 36 hours) before making landfall in northern Vietnam around 12:00 UTC on August 17.

The system will dissipate over Laos by 18:00 UTC on August 18.

Bebinca is the 15th named storm of the 2018 Pacific typhoon season.

Featured image: Tropical Storm “Bebinca” at 15:30 UTC on August 15, 2018. Credit: UW-CIMSS

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