7/6/2014 - KADENA AIR BASE, Japan -- The Kadena community is bracing for a massive typhoon expected to slam the island with winds gusts nearing 200 mph Tuesday.
Brig. Gen. James Hecker, 18th Wing commander, declared Tropical Cyclone Condition of Readiness 3 and the base began evacuating its aircraft Sunday in preparation for Typhoon Neoguri.
"I can't stress enough how dangerous this typhoon may be when it hits Okinawa," Hecker said in a message to the community. "This is the most powerful typhoon forecast to hit the island in 15 years; we expect damaging winds to arrive by early Tuesday morning.
"This is not just another typhoon. If we all follow the typhoon procedures and take care of each other, we will all make it through this typhoon safely," Hecker added.
Aircraft are evacuated to other bases in the Pacific to prevent physical damage and ensure they are able to continue to operate. Based on the position of the incoming typhoon, flying squadrons decide which aircraft to evacuate, and which aircraft will be placed in hangars.
In the current TCCOR, housing residents are instructed to remove or secure all outdoor and balcony items, fill vehicles and grill gas tanks, keep important documents safe and clean debris from gutters, storm drains, sidewalks and ditches near their quarters. Personnel should also initiate a general clean-up around office buildings.
The Kadena weather flight monitors these tropical storms and typhoons, and serves as a focal point for typhoon information on Okinawa as part of the Pacific Command's Tropical Cyclone Warning System. Visit the Kadena weather flight's website.
To understand all of the TCCOR levels, visit this factsheet.
Additional updates as this typhoon continues to develop will be posted on Kadena's official Facebook page.