9. Typhoon MINDULLE (Igme/10w)                Print this Article
>> June 23-July 05, 2004

Mindulle: contributed by North Korea, is the name of a flower, the dandelion.


As Super Typhoon Dianmu was spending the last of its energy over Japan, Typhoon Mindulle began forming north-northeast of Guam. Mindulle remained a tropical storm for several days as it passed through a high-shear environment before becoming a near super typhoon. The storm then weakened before veering north and crossing Taiwan where the poorly-defined LLCC led to significant differences in fixes between the different warning agencies. After striking Taiwan Mindulle moved toward Korea.

Storm Origins

The area of deep convection that was to become Mindulle originated from the leading edge of a monsoon gyre and was first mentioned in JTWC's STWO issued at 0100 UTC on 21 June. At this time, multi- spectral imagery located a possible LLCC approximately 180 nm south of Guam. As the suspect area was located in a moderate vertical shear environment with weak diffluence aloft, the development potential was assessed as poor. Based on increasing organization, the potential for development was then upgraded to fair at 22/1300 UTC. A TCFA was issued at 23/0000 UTC for an area of convection that had persisted over the past 12 hours to the west of a fully-exposed LLCC and which was moving north-northwestward at 6 kts near 15.5N/144.8E. Based on the increasing organization of the storm, increasing deep convection and upper-level outflow, the STWO released at 23/0600 UTC indicated that JTWC would be issuing warnings on the system shortly.

Synoptic History

The first warning was issued as promised at 0600 UTC on 23 June on Tropical Depression Mindulle (JMA had already named this system) which was moving west-northwestward at 8 kts with a MSW of 30 kts. The LLCC, located approximately 170 nm north-northwest of Guam, was partially- exposed to the east of the deep convection. At 23/1200 UTC Mindulle was upgraded to a tropical storm as it turned first northwestward, then back to the west-northwest and accelerated to around 11-13 kts.

By 24/0000 UTC Mindulle was tracking westward as a 45-kt tropical storm approximately 335 nm west-northwest of Saipan, the LLCC still partially-exposed on the northeast side of the deep convection. This was to be the case for several days as the system moved west to west- southwestward through a high shear environment, as depicted in CIMSS Wind Shear Products, with upper-level winds reaching 50 to 60 kts in places. However, Mindulle fought on and reached an intensity of 55 kts at 24/1800 UTC.

At 0000 UTC on 25 June Mindulle (named Igme by PAGASA when it entered their AOR) had weakened to 45 kts as the shearing began to take its toll. At this time the centre was fully-exposed again, being located approximately 810 nm east of Manila, Philippines. For some reason Mindulle suddenly slammed on the brakes, decelerating from 19 kts (at 24/1800 UTC) to only 4 kts, then accelerated back up to 11 kts six hours later. Shearing conditions began to relax and by 25/1200 UTC the centre was no longer exposed, at least temporarily. The MSW was brought back up to 50 kts at 25/1200 UTC as microwave imagery revealed that the LLCC had become partially-exposed again. The intensity of Mindulle held steady at 50 kts through much of the 26th (at 0000 UTC 26 June microwave imagery revealed that the LLCC had decoupled to the northeast of the deep convection and upper-level circulation) with a slight increase in intensity to 55 kts at 1800 UTC. At this time, microwave imagery suggested that a 70-nm eye could be forming.

During the last two days, Mindulle's west to west-northwesterly movement took it to within 475 nm east-northeast of Manila at 0000 UTC on 27 June. At this time the cyclone began to track toward the northwest. Further intensification took place as a large eye appeared, and Mindulle was upgraded to a typhoon at 27/0600 UTC. The MSW was estimated to have reached 80 kts at 27/1800 UTC as the storm underwent a stair-stepping movement which continued into the next day. The MSW increased to 95 kts at 28/0000 UTC, and Mindulle reached its peak intensity of 125 kts at 28/1800 UTC (and this was maintained through the 29th). The typhoon was moving more slowly in a weaker steering environment between two HIGHs by this time with one HIGH building eastward across China while the other was retreating to the east of Okinawa. The result was a slow west to west-northwesterly movement for several days.

At 0000 UTC on 30 June Typhoon Mindulle was still moving slowly west-northwestward, being located approximately 350 nm south of Taipei, Taiwan. A steady weakening trend had begun as the centre moved as close as 60 nm north of Luzon, Philippines. By 30/1200 UTC the MSW had fallen to 90 kts as the storm turned northwestward. At this time Mindulle exhibited a partially-exposed LLCC, as depicted in animated satellite imagery. At 30/1800 UTC Mindulle veered sharply to the north due to the formation of a TUTT-like feature to its northwest. Weakening continued into the next day as Mindulle, now on a definitive northward heading, began its approach to Taiwan.

At 0000 UTC on 1 July Typhoon Mindulle's MSW was down to 75 kts and it was centred 180 nm south of Taipei, Taiwan. Most of the associated deep convection was located south of the LLCC. As the storm continued north- ward, its track bent to the northwest at 01/0600 UTC before resuming its northward course at 01/1200 UTC. At this time the system appeared to be consolidating but was downgraded to a 55-kt tropical storm after making landfall over Taiwan. Interaction with the mountains of Taiwan significantly weakened the storm further with winds soon down to 45 kts. The following day at 0600 UTC Mindulle was centred roughly over the northern end of Taiwan, but because of the difficulty in locating the LLCC there were differences of opinion in the actual position. Some agencies were apparently fixing the centre on the western side of Taiwan. JTWC considered this to be a circulation centre created by the leeside effect. The absence of QuikScat data, microwave imagery and the lack of synoptic observations failed to shed any light on the matter.

Typhoon Mindulle failed to recover from its excursion across Taiwan. At 0000 UTC on 3 July the storm had weakened further to 35 kts and was moving north-northeastward at 9 kts approximately 150 nm north-northeast of Taipei. The 03/0600 UTC warning relocated the centre roughly 80 nm to the northwest of the previous position to 28.4N/121.7E, or 380 nm southwest of Cheju Do. The relocation was based on a combination of QuikScat, the Korean analysis, and the NCEP GFS initial panel which all indicated that Mindulle was actually located along the coast of China (see the following note from Huang Chunliang). The system continued to move north-northeastward as a fully-exposed system with very little deep convection and was downgraded to a tropical depression at 03/1800 UTC. What was left of Mindulle accelerated northeastward to 22 kts at 04/0000 UTC, then slowed to 14 kts as it headed toward Korea. The final warning was issued six hours later when the system was centred 90 nm southwest of Kunsan, Korea. JMA mentioned the ex-Mindulle system as a developing LOW and monitored it through the 5th, when it had weakened below gale force in the central Sea of Japan.

JMA's and PAGASA's peak 10-min avg MSW estimates for Mindulle were 90 kts and 105 kts, respectively. The minimum CP estimated by JMA was 940 hPa.

Huang Chunliang's Note -- Landfall 1: According to the CWB warnings, Weak Typhoon 0407 (Mindulle) made landfall approximately 20 km south of Huanlien City, Taiwan around 01/1440 UTC with a MSW of 58 kts and a CP of 975 hPa.

Landfall 2: According to the NMC warnings, Severe Tropical Storm 0407 (Mindulle) made landfall in Huanghua Town, Yueqing City (a sub-city of Wenzhou City), Zhejiang around 03/0130 UTC with a MSW of 49 kts and a CP of 985 hPa.

Meteorological Observations

The following observations were sent by Huang Chunliang -- a special thanks to Chunliang for sending the data.

(1) Rainfall Observations from the Philippines

(only amounts greater than 100 mm are listed)

Station      WMO ID  Lat    Lon   Alt (m)  Rain (mm)  Time Period (UTC)
Baguio       98223  16.4N  120.6E 1501      124.6     28/0000 - 29/0000
  "            "      "       "      "      444.2     29/0000 - 30/0000
  "            "      "       "      "      443.9     30/0000 - 01/0000
  "            "      "       "      "     1012.7     28/0000 - 01/0000
Laoag        98223  18.2N  120.5E    5      289.6     29/0000 - 30/0000
  "            "      "       "      "      288.8     30/0000 - 01/0000
Calayan      98133  19.3N  121.5E   13      161.2     29/0000 - 30/0000
Vigan        98222  17.6N  120.4E   33      136.0     30/0000 - 01/0000
Dagupan      98325  16.1N  120.3E    2      100.6     30/0000 - 01/0000

(2) Rainfall Observations from Taiwan - WMO Stations

(only amounts greater than 100 mm are listed)

Station      WMO ID  Lat    Lon   Alt (m)  Rain (mm)  Time Period (UTC)
Chenggong    46761  23.1N  121.4E   37      352.0     30/1600 - 01/1600
Hualien      46699  24.0N  121.6E   19      217.0     30/1600 - 01/1600
Taitung      46766  22.8N  121.2E   10      204.5     30/1600 - 01/1600
Lanyu        46762  22.0N  121.6E  325      139.0     30/1600 - 01/1600
Dawu         46754  22.4N  120.9E    8      128.0     30/1600 - 01/1600
Hengchun     46759  22.0N  120.8E   24      114.5     30/1600 - 01/1600
Mount Alisan 46753  23.5N  120.8E 2406      555.5     01/1600 - 02/1600
      "        "      "       "      "      616.0     02/1600 - 03/1600
Dongshi      46730  23.3N  119.7E   45      405.0     01/1600 - 02/1600
Taichung     46753  24.2N  120.7E   78      308.5     02/1600 - 03/1600

(3) Rainfall Observations from Taiwan - CWB Stations

(a) For the Period: 29/1600 - 30/1600 UTC (only amounts >= 100 mm)

CWB Station ID        County          Rainfall
    C0R36             Pingtung        122.0 mm
    C1T95             Hualien         117.0 mm
    C1T97                "            113.0 mm
    C1T99                "            105.5 mm
    C0R42             Pingtung        103.5 mm

(b) For the Period: 30/1600 - 01/1600 UTC (only amounts >= 200 mm)

CWB Station ID        County          Rainfall
    C0Z06*            Hualien         527.0 mm
    C1T99                "            299.0 mm
    C1T83                "            286.0 mm
    C1Z02                "            271.5 mm
    C1T94                "            262.0 mm
    C1T88                "            262.0 mm
    C0S83             Taitung         256.5 mm
    C1T98             Hualien         250.0 mm
    C1T90                "            243.0 mm
    C0T82                "            242.5 mm
    C1T97                "            237.5 mm
    C1T93                "            236.5 mm
    C0T9A                "            234.5 mm
    C1T86                "            234.5 mm
    C0T87                "            233.5 mm
    C0S74             Taitung         228.5 mm
    C1Z03             Hualien         228.0 mm
    C0T9F                "            226.0 mm
    C1T95                "            222.0 mm
    C1Z01                "            221.0 mm
    C1T81                "            221.0 mm
    C0Z05                "            217.5 mm
    C0T96                "            215.0 mm
    C1T89                "            208.5 mm
    C0T9E                "            208.0 mm
    C0T9G                "            206.0 mm
    C0S81             Taitung         205.5 mm
    C1Z04             Hualien         202.0 mm
    A0T78                "            201.5 mm
    C1T92                "            201.0 mm

* - C0Z06 = Station Yuli

(c) For the Period: 01/1600 - 02/1600 UTC (only amounts >= 400 mm)

CWB Station ID        County          Rainfall
    C0R10 *           Pingtung        730.5 mm
    C1V30             Kaohsiung       666.5 mm
    C1V24                 "           583.5 mm
    C1R14             Pingtung        580.0 mm
    C1V19             Kaohsiung       577.5 mm
    C1R12             Pingtung        544.5 mm
    C1V27             Kaohsiung       528.0 mm
    C1M61             Chia-I          527.0 mm
    C1V22             Kaohsiung       518.5 mm
    C0M53             Chia-I          504.0 mm
    C1M39                "            503.5 mm
    C0M41                "            502.0 mm
    C1F88             Nantou          480.0 mm
    C1V23             Kaohsiung       466.5 mm
    C0O81             Tainan          459.6 mm
    C1F94             Taichung        454.5 mm
    C1M60             Chia-I          438.5 mm
    C1M54                "            436.5 mm
    C1V34             Kaohsiung       432.5 mm
    C0X02             Tainan          429.5 mm
    C1M44             Chia-I          428.0 mm
    C1O87             Tainan          425.0 mm
    C1V21             Kaohsiung       409.0 mm
    C1V20                 "           403.5 mm
    C1R13             Pingtung        401.5 mm
    C0R15                 "           400.0 mm

* - C0R10 = Station Mount Weiliaosan

(d) For the Period: 02/1600 - 03/1600 UTC (only amounts >= 400 mm)

CWB Station ID        County          Rainfall
    C1V19             Kaohsiung       670.0 mm
    C1F88             Nantou          647.0 mm
    C1V22             Kaohsiung       636.5 mm
    C1V30                 "           616.5 mm
    C1V27                 "           605.0 mm
    C1F89             Taichung        603.5 mm
    C1F94                 "           569.5 mm
    C1H85             Nantou          554.5 mm
    C0F95                "            540.5 mm
    C1V46             Kaohsiung       538.0 mm
    C1F87             Taichung        516.0 mm
    C1V20             Kaohsiung       508.5 mm
    C0H9A             Nantou          501.5 mm
    C1V24             Kaohsiung       460.0 mm
    C0R10             Pingtung        454.0 mm
    C1F9D             Taichung        440.0 mm
    C1V29             Kaohsiung       440.0 mm
    C0M53             Chia-I          437.5 mm
    C1F9H             Taichung        432.0 mm
    C1R14             Pingtung        429.5 mm
    C1M63             Chia-I          424.0 mm
    C1M62                "            423.0 mm
    C1H86             Nantou          417.0 mm
    C1F9E             Taichung        415.0 mm
    C1F91                 "           413.5 mm

(4) Rainfall Observations from the Chinese Mainland

(only amounts greater than 50 mm are listed)

All the following are for the period: 02/0000 - 03/0000 UTC.

Station         Province  WMO ID   Lat     Lon   Alt (m)  Rain (mm)
Ruian           Zhejiang   -----  27.8N  120.7E    38       68.9
Pingtan *       Fujian     58944  25.5N  119.8E    31       56.0
Dachen Dao      Zhejiang   58666  28.5N  121.9E    84       51.1
Fuding          Fujian     58754  27.3N  120.2E    38       50.0
Yuhuan          Zhejiang   -----  -----  ------    --       78.0
Dongtou         Zhejiang   -----  -----  ------    --       57.0

* - Pingtan is one of the counties of Fuzhou.

(5) Wind Observations

Station Yonagunijima, Okinawa Prefecture, WMO 47912, 24.5N/123.0E, Alt 30 m, recorded a peak gust of S 63 kts (time unknown). A gust of SE 62 kts was recorded at 01/1430 UTC.

Station Ishigakijima, Okinawa Prefecture, WMO 47918, 24.3N/124.2E, Alt 6 m, recorded a peak gust of S 54 kts (time unknown). Gusts of S 52 kts and SE 46 kts were recorded at 02/0540 and 01/1704 UTC, respectively.

Phil Smith's Encounter with Mindulle

The following account was sent by Phil Smith, a transplanted Aussie living in Hong Kong. A special thanks to Phil for sharing his personal "reconnaissance" of Typhoon Mindulle.

"This afternoon I took off from Taipei right in the midst of Mindulle's closest approach. Even while pushing back from the gate, the plane was rocking everywhere and violent squalls of rain were belting the portside windows of the plane so hard you expected the windows to come in. Taxiing out to the runway, the plane also was being shaken violently by the powerful gusts of winds. The take-off run seemed relatively smooth, but as soon as we began to climb we all enjoyed a Disneyland roller coaster ride with the plane sometimes plummeting earthwards, sometimes suddenly rocketing heavenwards, and generally copping quite a buffeting. Suddenly, a short distance into the climb, the sun shone brightly, the sky was bright, clear, blue, and the ride became very smooth, except for what felt like one colossal downdraft.

"The captain came on the public address system and ordered all cabin crew and passengers to remain seated and with belts fastened and ordered that there was no time to even go to the toilet. He said, 'We are now passing through the eye of the typhoon and there will be a great deal more strong turbulence in just a few more seconds.' Seconds later we plunged again into deep dark grey cloud and enjoyed another roller coaster ride as before. We soon rose above the lower mass of clouds, although there were still higher clouds far above us with a few breaks of blue sky. We were right up to cruising altitude before the 'Fasten Seat Belts' sign was cancelled and the crew were allowed to begin their in-flight service.

"Technically, at the time we flew through the eye, the storm had been downgraded to a tropical storm, and a short distance below the plane the eye was filled with clouds. However, I still unexpectedly enjoyed the dream of a lifetime: seeing the eye of a storm from the air, from the inside, with my own eyes. What a thrill it was! I have experienced two previous eye-passages with my feet planted firmly on the ground, but to be flying through the middle and seeing the majesty of the encircling clouds towering above the plane and glistening in the unbelievably bright sunlight was a truly unforgettable experience."

Damage and Casualties

News reports indicate that Mindulle/Igme was responsible for 31 deaths in the Philippines and for $9.8 million worth of damage to crops and infrastructure in the Cagayan Valley region. Eleven persons were still missing at the time of this writing. The NDCC indicated that a total of 113,004 families, or 577,471 persons, had been displaced by the typhoon. Total damage to crops and infrastructure was estimated at P1.1 billion. Agricultural crops worth P654.2 million were destroyed while damage to infrastructure was placed at P444.8 million.

In Taiwan, torrential rains associated with Typhoon Mindulle caused floods and mudslides which claimed the lives of at least 25 people. Twelve persons were reported missing and damages were equivalent to about 400 million US dollars. Flooding knocked out electricity to as many as 213,000 homes. An official at the Taiwan Power Company estimated damage and lost revenue at about T$10 billion (US$297 million). The island's main hydroelectric power project was hardest hit, with two plants along the Tachiah River buried by mudslides and two others forced to shut down after rivers rose. To add insult to injury, Taiwan was rocked by an earthquake measuring 5.8 on the Richter scale just a few days after the passage of Mindulle while the island was coping with the aftermath of the flooding.

Additional articles of interest can be found at the following URL:


(Report written by Kevin Boyle with significant contributions by Huang Chunliang)

Source: Gary Padgett's Monthly Tropical Cyclone Summary - June 2004

© 2004-2005 Typhoon2000.com All Rights Reserved.

[close] :: [top]