Okinawa 1988-1991

Okinawa 1988-1991

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Typhoon Kaemi

Okinawa probably will be spared the full wrath of Typhoon Kaemi, but the island still should expect some effect from the storm’s outer bands, Kadena Air Base weather officials said Friday.

“We’ll get isolated showers and no more than 35-knot [40-mph] winds” as Kaemi, the sixth storm of the northwest Pacific’s tropical cyclone season, passes well southwest of Okinawa on Monday, said Capt. Colin Reece, 18th Weather Flight commander.

Though Kaemi continues tracking northwest toward Taiwan, “we’re keeping an eye on it to see if anything changes,” Reece said.

At noon Friday, Kaemi was reported to be 851 miles south-southeast of Okinawa, churning west-northwest at 16 mph, packing sustained winds of 98 mphs and gusts of up to 121 mph at its center.

The Joint Typhoon Warning Center forecasts Kaemi to increase in strength, with peak sustained winds of 127 mph and maximum gusts of 155 mph occuring from early morning to midday Sunday.

Still, Kaemi is forecast to pass well to the southwest of Okinawa, 373 miles away at 7 a.m. Monday.

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Independence Day Guidelines

Base officials offer guidelines for fun, safe Independence day.

The Fourth of July is a time for fun and revelry as Americans across the globe celebrate freedom and commemorate their independence from Great Britain.

There are many activities associated with the holiday weekend such as barbecues and fireworks, but these activities can be hazardous and sometimes, especially in the case of fireworks, illegal.

Marine Corps Bases Japan Order 5500.2C prohibits the use of fireworks on base and by Status of Forces Agreement personnel.

Fireworks can be a risk to operate for anyone other than professionals and cause $20 million in property damage annually, according to the National Fire Prevention Association.

There are many opportunities to enjoy fireworks during the summer, and many occasions and local festivals throughout the year that incorporate fireworks, such as Kadena Air Base's Great American Bash July 4. For more information regarding the display, call the 18th Services Squadron at 632-0310.

Fireworks are not the only danger to people and property during the Independence Day weekend, according to Recil Mabry, assistant fire prevention chief of the Marine Corps Bases Japan Fire Department. During the holiday, the fire department regularly receives calls to put out outdoor barbecue fires.

The MCBJ Fire Department recommends always supervising the grill while barbecuing, keeping children and pets away from the grill, checking hose connections on gas grills, only using charcoal starting fluids on charcoal grills, and reading the manufacturers instructions completely.

'The 101 Critical Days of Summer on Okinawa are a great time for barbecues, festivals, and fireworks each with their joys and inherent dangers,' said Robbin Johnson, an occupational safety and health specialist for the Marine Corps Base Camp Butler Safety Office. "Think about your safety and the safety of those around you when you partake in the happy days of summer."