New tropical storm Utor expected to hit northern Hainan late Wednesday
Utor will push off the western coast of Luzon Monday night, and enter the South China Sea for Tuesday.
As conditions in the Philippines gradually improve Tuesday, Utor will begin to pose another significant threat to the heavily populated southeast coast of China, from Hong Kong and Macau to Zhanjiang and Hainan Island.
After Utor moves away from the Philippines, it is expected to be a weaker typhoon. It is not out of the question that Utor’s strength drops to a strong tropical storm.
Utor will then move over warm waters of the South China Sea. This part of the South China Sea has seen tropical systems in the past few weeks, but water temperatures remain warm and prime for further development.
Though the exact strength of Utor is very hard to forecast until it moves away from the Philippines, there remains a strong likelihood of this storm again being a stronger typhoon as it moves near the China coastline.
The storm is expected to move towards southern China, making landfall anywhere from Hong Kong south to northern Hainan, some time late Wednesday or early Thursday local time.
AccuWeather.com Expert Senior Meteorologist Jason Nicholls cautions, "These areas were hit hard by Mangkhut last week and Jebi the week prior. Another round of nasty weather from Utor is on the table."
With Utor, mudslides can occur with the heavy rainfall, strong wind gusts can damage infrastructure, and large waves are likely as the storm moves onshore a second time. Some parts of southern China into Vietnam have seen over a foot of rain the past week and a half from other tropical systems, so this may lead to much greater flood risk also.
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