NAHA, Japan (AP). Tropical Storm Mawar has weakened and is bringing heavy rainfall to Japan's southern islands. It passed the Okinawan Archipelago in the early hours of Friday morning.
Residents of vulnerable areas have been warned about the possibility of flooding and mudslides. Okinawa continued to experience strong winds and many local flights were cancelled for the day.
The Japan Meteorological Agency reported that Mawar, a former super typhoon with winds of up to 90 km/h (56mph), was moving eastward over the Pacific Ocean as it passed Okinoerabujima.
The meteorological agency reported that while wind damage in Okinawa was minimal, warm, damp air brought by the tropical storm intensified seasonal rains and threatened flooding and mudslides.
Over the next 24 to 48 hours, up to 35 centimeters (1 foot) of rain is expected. The agency issued flood and mudslide alerts in parts southwest Japan. Residents near rivers and hillsides were warned to exercise caution.
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Mawar skirted Taiwan, the Philippines and Guam after it tore across Guam in the last week. Mawar sent waves crashing onto Taiwan's east coastline and brought heavy rainfall to the north Philippines. However, no major damage has been reported.
Japan deployed a number PAC-3 land to air interceptors in southern islands, but they were not placed at the intended locations because of safety precautions before the typhoon. North Korea will try again after a failed launch on Wednesday.
The U.S. Military, which has multiple bases on Okinawa with troops, closely tracked the storm.
Mawar, the strongest typhoon in the U.S. Pacific Territory for more than 20 years, hit Guam on Monday, flipping cars and tearing off roofs. It also knocked out the power.