Good morning! When I woke up this morning and looked out of my window I thought I was in a different country for a few seconds. The sunshine, blue sky and white clouds of the past days had disappeared for what looks like a semi-apocalyptic black sky. The wind was (and still is) howling like a big and sad dog and branches are taking shapes never seen before. Well, it is typhoon season again! Just like last year around this time all of Hong Kong is on alert for heavy rain and brutal gusts of up to 130 km/h. The strong winds of typhoon Kalmaegi are battering the coastal regions of the South China Sea right now, having already past the Philippines.
Kalmaegi was originally named Luis and started out as nothing but a small tropical disturbanc northeast of Palau on September 10. Well, later the same day, the JTWC had reported that it had intensified into a tropical depression, giving it the designation “15W”. Early on September 12, the Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA) finally started to track 15W as a tropical depression. In the same time, the Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Science Administration (PAGASA) had issued their first advisories on the storm, naming Tropical Depression Luis. Well… as Luis entered a more conducive environment, it had steadily intensified into a tropical storm and was named Kalmaegi by the JMA later that day and the Joint Typhoon Warning Centre followed suit on the same day. Kalmaegi means “seagull” in Korean. The following day, Kalmaegi instensified further, and was upgraded to a typhoon. And now Kalmaegi is here, centered about 380 kilometers (236 miles) south-southwest of Hong Kong at 5 am today and is moving west-northwest at about 30 kilometers an hour toward the Leizhou peninsula and Hainan island in China, according to the Hong Kong Observatory.
An interesting fact: Kalamaegi will possibly be delaying the opening of the city’s stock market today. According to its published rules, Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Ltd. will cancel premarket trading today should signal 8 still be in force between 7 am and 9 am, with the morning trading session to begin at least two hours after the signal is dropped. There will be no morning session if the warning is lowered after 9 a.m. and no trading for the day if it’s still in force after noon.
At LPC, there will be no classes as long as the Hong Kong Observatory does not lower the intensity of the storm warning from its current category (Signal 8) and classes will commence one hour after the signal is dropped.
Don’t worry about us, we are all safe in our blocks and rooms watching the weather and wondering about the strength and destructive beauty of our earth’s climate.