Typhoon Herb

Typhoon Herb, known in the Philippines as Typhoon Huaning, was the strongest and the largest storm of 1996. Herb struck the Ryūkyū Islands, Taiwan and the People's Republic of China, causing major damage. The name Herb was used in the Western Pacific name list for the first time after the list had been revised earlier in 1996. Although the name was not retired, the Western Pacific name list was changed from English names to Asian names in 2000, so 1996 was in fact the only occasion when the name was used (it was never used in the Atlantic Ocean or the Eastern Pacific.)

Typhoon Herb (Huaning)
Typhoon (JMA scale)
Category 5 super typhoon (SSHWS)
Typhoon Herb
Typhoon Herb near peak intensity
FormedJuly 21, 1996
DissipatedAugust 3, 1996
Highest winds10-minute sustained: 175 km/h (110 mph)
1-minute sustained: 260 km/h (160 mph)
Lowest pressure925 hPa (mbar); 27.32 inHg
Fatalities284 dead, 306 missing
Damage$5 billion (1996 USD)
Areas affectedRyūkyū Islands, Taiwan, People's Republic of China
Part of the 1996 Pacific typhoon season

Meteorological history

Herb 1996 track
Map plotting the track and the intensity of the storm, according to the Saffir–Simpson scale

The active monsoon trough that spawned Typhoons Frankie (08W) and Gloria (09W) consolidated into a third area well east of the other two to develop Tropical Depression 10W near Saipan on July 23. It moved northward at first, then westward in response to the subtropical ridge to its north. Tropical Depression 10W was upgraded to Tropical Storm Herb on July 24. Tropical Storm Herb moved west, growing in size and strengthening to Typhoon Herb on July 25 before 48 hours later reaching Category 4. Herb slightly weakened while it underwent a Fujiwhara interaction with Typhoon Gloria. Shortly afterward Herb began to intensify again, and became a Category 5 super typhoon on July 30. Herb also became a very large typhoon: the largest typhoon in July and the 8th largest typhoon since 1977.

Herb struck the Ryūkyū Islands and made landfall in northern Taiwan as a Category 4 super typhoon on July 31. The eye of the storm passed directly over the capital, Taipei. Herb weakened as it crossed Taiwan and then the Taiwan Strait, to make landfall in China as a strong Category 2. Herb rapidly weakened over the country, and dissipated on August 3.


Costliest known Pacific typhoons
Rank Typhoon Season Damage
(2018 USD)
1 Mireille 1991 $18.4 billion
2 Jebi 2018 $15 billion
3 Songda 2004 $12.3 billion
4 Fitow 2013 $11.2 billion
5 Saomai 2000 $9.17 billion
6 Prapiroon $8.93 billion
7 Bart 1999 $8.65 billion
8 Rammasun 2014 $8.5 billion
9 Herb 1996 $7.99 billion
10 Flo 1990 $7.67 billion
Source: [1]
Wettest tropical cyclones and their remnants in Taiwan
Highest-known totals
Precipitation Storm Location Ref.
Rank mm in
1 3,060 120.47 Morakot 2009 Alishan, Chiayi [1]
2 2,319 91.30 Nari 2001 Wulai, New Taipei [2]
3 2,162 85.12 Flossie 1969 Beitou, Taipei [1]
4 1,987 78.23 Herb 1996 Alishan, Chiayi [3]
5 1,774 69.84 Saola 2012 Yilan City [4]
6 1,700 66.93 Lynn 1987 Taipei [5]
7 1,672 65.83 Clara 1967 Dongshan, Yilan [6]
8 1,611 63.43 Sinlaku 2008 Heping, Taichung [7]
9 1,561 61.46 Haitang 2005 Sandimen, Pingtung [8]
10 1,546 60.87 Aere 2004 Miaoli County [9]

Ryūkyū Islands

Prior to the typhoon's arrival in the southern Ryūkyū Islands, officials issued storm warnings for most islands and canceled 76 flights.[10] On July 31, the eye of Typhoon Herb passed roughly 16 to 20 km (9.9 to 12.4 mi) southwest of Iriomote Island. On the island, a barometric pressure of 927.1 mbar (hPa; 27.38 inHg) was measured. On Yonaguni, a maximum wind gust of 244 km/h (152 mph) was also measured. Widespread damage took place across the southern Ryūkyū Islands, with losses reaching ¥667 million (US$6.2 million).[nb 1][12][10] On Ishigaki Island, one home was destroyed and eighteen others were damaged. Extensive losses to agriculture, fisheries, and forestry took place across the region as well. Losses on Ishigaki alone reached ¥630 million (US$5.9 million).[12] In Okinawa, large swells up to 4 m (13 ft) flooded low-lying areas, leaving minor damage.[13]


In Taiwan, heavy rain from Herb caused flooding and major damage. In Taiwan, at least 51 people were killed and 22 went missing. Herb is the fourth wettest known tropical cyclone to impact the country.

Mainland China

In China, at least 233 people were killed and 284 people went missing. Total damage to agriculture and property totaled US$5 billion (1996 dollars).[14]


  1. ^ The total was originally reported in Yen. Total converted via the Oanda Corporation website.[11]

See also


  1. ^ a b Central Weather Bureau (2010). "侵台颱風資料庫". Retrieved October 19, 2011.
  2. ^ Unattributed (September 9, 2009). "莫拉克颱風暴雨量及洪流量分析" (PDF). Water Resources Agency, Ministry of Economic Affairs, Republic of China. Retrieved July 17, 2011.
  3. ^ Unattributed (September 9, 2009). "莫拉克颱風暴雨量及洪流量分析" (PDF). Water Resources Agency, Ministry of Economic Affairs, Republic of China. Retrieved July 17, 2011.
  4. ^ Chen Zhi (August 2, 2012). "Typhoon Saola dumps heavy downpours around Taiwan". Xinhua General News. Retrieved August 2, 2012.
  5. ^ Joint Typhoon Warning Center; Naval Pacific Meteorology and Oceanography Center (1988). Annual Tropical Cyclone Report: 1987 (PDF) (Report). United States Navy, United States Air Force. Retrieved July 1, 2014.
  6. ^ Lianshou, Chen. Topic 2.1 Observing and forecasting rainfall. Fifth International Workshop on Tropical Cyclones. Retrieved August 4, 2012.
  7. ^ "Typhoon Sinlaku Central emergency operation center No.12". Central emergency operation center. September 16, 2008. Retrieved January 13, 2009.
  8. ^ Chiu Yu-Tzu (July 20, 2005). "Haitang fizzles out, leaves Taiwan wet". Taipei Times. Retrieved April 11, 2010.
  9. ^ Padgett, Gary. "Monthly Global Tropical Cyclone Summary: November 2004". Retrieved June 10, 2012.
  10. ^ a b "Weather Disaster Report: (1996-927-05)" (in Japanese). National Institute of Informatics. 2012. Retrieved October 19, 2012.
  11. ^ "Historical Exchange Rates". Oanda Corporation. 2012. Retrieved 2012-08-31.
  12. ^ a b "Weather Disaster Report: (1996-918-01)" (in Japanese). National Institute of Informatics. 2012. Retrieved October 19, 2012.
  13. ^ "Weather Disaster Report: (1996-936-04)" (in Japanese). National Institute of Informatics. 2012. Retrieved October 19, 2012.
  14. ^ Chun-Chieh Wu and Ying-Hwa Kuo. Typhoons Affecting Taiwan: Current Understanding and Future Challenges. Retrieved on 2008-12-01.

External links

1996 Pacific typhoon season

The 1996 Pacific typhoon season has no official bounds; it ran year-round in 1996, but most tropical cyclones tend to form in the northwestern Pacific Ocean between May and November. These dates conventionally delimit the period of each year when most tropical cyclones form in the northwestern Pacific Ocean.

The scope of this article is limited to the Pacific Ocean, north of the equator and west of the international date line. Storms that form east of the date line and north of the equator are called hurricanes; see 1996 Pacific hurricane season. Tropical Storms formed in the entire west pacific basin were assigned a name by the Joint Typhoon Warning Center. Tropical depressions in this basin have the "W" suffix added to their number. Tropical depressions that enter or form in the Philippine area of responsibility are assigned a name by the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration or PAGASA. This can often result in the same storm having two names.

Effects of Typhoon Morakot on Taiwan

Between August 6, 2009, and August 10, 2009, Taiwan was hit by Typhoon Morakot, which brought about unprecedented rainfall and flooding across the country. The incidents surrounding Typhoon Morakot are known as the Eight-Eight Flood (八八水災). The flooding is the most devastating flooding incident since the flooding caused by Typhoon Ellen in 1959. Typhoon Morakot is most remembered for the destruction of Siaolin Village in Jiasian, Kaohsiung.

According to the Government of the Republic of China, 681 people died and 18 people went missing due to the typhoon. The Executive Yuan announced that all flags be placed at half-mast in mourning between August 22 and 24. The government was criticized for reacting slowly to the crisis, causing President Ma Ying-jeou's approval ratings to drop significantly and leading to the resignation of Premier Liu Chao-shiuan

John Milliman

John D. Milliman is a retired American Emeritus Professor of marine geology. He is a professor emeritus in the department of physical sciences and in the Virginia Institute of Marine Science at the College of William & Mary.

List of disasters by cost

Disasters can be particularly notable for the high costs associated with responding to and recovering from them. This page lists the estimated economic costs of relatively recent disasters.

The costs of disasters vary considerably depending on a range of factors, such as the geographical location where they occur. When a large disaster occurs in a wealthy country, the financial damage may be large, but when a comparable disaster occurs in a poorer country, the actual financial damage may appear to be relatively small. This is in part due to the difficulty of measuring the financial damage in areas that lack insurance. For example, the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami, with a death toll of over 230,000 people, cost a 'mere' $15 billion, whereas in the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, in which 11 people died, the damages were six-fold.

Note: All damage figures are listed in billions of United States dollars.

Tropical Storm Gloria

The name Gloria was used for three tropical cyclones in the Atlantic Ocean, twelve tropical cyclones in the Western Pacific Ocean and at least three tropical cyclones in the Southern Hemisphere.


Hurricane Gloria (1976) – remained out at sea.

Hurricane Gloria (1979) – a minor hurricane that stayed out to sea.

Hurricane Gloria (1985) – grazed North Carolina and struck Long Island and Connecticut, causing $900 million in damage and eight deaths.The name Gloria was retired after the 1985 season, and was replaced by Grace in the 1991 Atlantic hurricane season.

Western Pacific:

Typhoon Gloria (1949) (T4905)

Typhoon Gloria (1952) (T5226)

Typhoon Gloria (1957) (T5715) – struck the Philippines and Hong Kong.

Tropical Storm Gloria (1960) (35W, Japan Meteorological Agency analyzed it as a tropical depression, not as a tropical storm.)

Typhoon Gloria (1963) (T6314, 29W, Oniang) – struck Taiwan and eastern China.

Tropical Storm Gloria (1965) (40W, Japan Meteorological Agency analyzed it as a tropical depression, not as a tropical storm.)

Typhoon Gloria (1968) (T6819, 24W, Osang)

Tropical Storm Gloria (1971) (35W, Japan Meteorological Agency analyzed it as a tropical depression, not as a tropical storm.)

Typhoon Gloria (1974) (T7428, 32W, Aning)

Tropical Storm Gloria (1978) (T7816, 17W)

Typhoon Gloria (1996) (T9608, 09W) – hit Taiwan and China before Typhoon Herb hit there.

Typhoon Gloria (1999) (T9922, 30W, Trining)

Typhoon Chataan (2002) (T0206, 08W, Gloria) – named Gloria by PAGASASouthwest Indian:

Cyclone Gloria (2000) (1999–2000 15S)Southwest Pacific:

Cyclone Gloria (1975)

Cyclone Doris-Gloria (1980)

Typhoon Haitang (2005)

Typhoon Haitang, known in the Philippines as Typhoon Feria, was the first super typhoon of the 2005 season in the northwestern Pacific. It had winds up to 255 km/h (160 mph) at peak intensity, and caused over 18 serious injuries and 13 confirmed deaths in Taiwan and People's Republic of China. Damage totaled about $1.1 billion (2005 USD), most of which occurred in mainland China.

Typhoon Huaning

The name Huaning has been used in the Philippines by PAGASA in the Western Pacific. To not be confused, look for Typhoon Juaning (disambiguation).

Super Typhoon Cora (1964) (T6406, 08W, Huaning) – struck the Philippines.

Typhoon Shirley (1968) (T6809, 13W, Huaning)

Tropical Depression Huaning (1972)

Typhoon Huaning (1976)

Severe Tropical Storm Herbert (1980) (T8006, 07W, Huaning)

Typhoon Holly (1984) (T8410, 11W, Huaning)

Typhoon Warren (1988) (T8806, 06W, Huaning)

Huaning (1992)

1996's Super Typhoon Herb (T9609, 10W, Huaning) – struck Ryukyu Islands, Taiwan and China.

Severe Tropical Storm Bolaven (2000) (T0006, 11W, Huaning)

Severe Tropical Storm Yutu (2001) (T0107, 10W, Huaning)

Severe Tropical Storm Sanvu (2005) (T0510, 10W, Huaning)

Tropical Depression 06W (2009) (06W, Huaning)

Typhoon Soulik (2013) (T1307, 07W, Huaning) – struck Taiwan and China.

Tropical Storm Haitang (2017) (T1710, 12W, Huaning)

Typhoon Longwang

Typhoon Longwang, known in the Philippines as Typhoon Maring, was the deadliest tropical cyclone to impact China during the 2005 Pacific typhoon season. Longwang was first identified as a tropical depression on September 25 north of the Mariana Islands. Moving along a general westward track, the system quickly intensified and reached typhoon status on September 27. After reaching Category 4-equivalent intensity on the Saffir–Simpson hurricane scale, adverse atmospheric conditions along with internal structural changes resulted in temporary weakening. The structural change culminated in Longwang becoming an annular typhoon and prompted re-intensification. The storm attained peak strength with winds of 175 km/h (110 mph) and a pressure of 930 mbar (hPa; 27.46 inHg) on October 1 as it approached Taiwan. Interaction with the mountainous terrain of the island and further structural changes caused some weakening before the typhoon made landfall near Hualien City early on October 2. Crossing the island in six hours, Longwang emerged over the Taiwan Strait before moving onshore again later that day, this time in Fujian Province, China as a minimal typhoon. Once over mainland China, the storm quickly weakened and ultimately dissipated late on October 3.

Prior to the storm's arrival, officials in Taiwan activated all emergency operations centers and urged residents to take serious precautions. The storm brought record-breaking winds, peaking at 234 km/h (145 mph) in Hualien City, and torrential rains. Despite the intensity of the storm, damage was relatively limited there. Two people lost their lives, 73 were injured, and damage reached NT$570 million (US$17.7 million). Large-scale evacuations took place in mainland China, with 684,860 people relocating. Losses were extensive in Fujian Province where 1-in-100 year rains caused disastrous flooding in Fuzhou, killing 62 people. In Minhou County, 85 paramilitary police perished when a landslide destroyed their barracks. Throughout China, 147 people were killed and damage amounted to 7.81 billion RMB (US$944.6 million). Due to the severe damage, the name Longwang was later retired.

Typhoon Morakot

Typhoon Morakot, known in the Philippines as Typhoon Kiko, was the deadliest typhoon to impact Taiwan in recorded history. The eighth named storm and fourth typhoon of the 2009 Pacific typhoon season, Morakot wrought catastrophic damage in Taiwan, leaving 673 people dead and 26 missing, and causing roughly NT$110 billion (US$3.3 billion) in damages. The storm produced copious amounts of rainfall, peaking at 2,777 mm (109.3 in), far surpassing the previous record of 1,736 mm (68.35 in) set by Typhoon Herb in 1996. The extreme amount of rain triggered enormous mudflows and severe flooding throughout southern Taiwan. One landslide (and subsequent flood) destroyed the entire town of Siaolin, killing over 400 people. The slow-moving storm also caused widespread damage in China, leaving eight people dead and causing $1.4 billion (2009 USD) in damages. Nearly 2,000 homes were destroyed in the country and 136,000 more were reported to have sustained damage.

In the wake of the storm, Taiwan's government faced extreme criticism for the slow response to the disaster and having only initially deployed roughly 2,100 soldiers to the affected regions. Later, the number of soldiers working to recover trapped residents increased to 46,000. Rescue crews were able to retrieve thousands of trapped residents from buried villages and isolated towns across the island. Days later, Taiwan's president Ma Ying-jeou apologized for the government's slow response publicly. On August 19, the Taiwan government announced that they would start a NT$100 billion (US$3 billion) reconstruction plan that would take place over a three-year span in the devastated regions of southern Taiwan. Days after the storm, international aid began to be sent to the island.

The storm also caused severe flooding in the northern Philippines that killed 26 people due to the enhancement of the southwest monsoon.

Typhoon Omar

Typhoon Omar of 1992, known in the Philippines as Typhoon Lusing, was the strongest and costliest typhoon to strike Guam since Typhoon Pamela in 1976. The cyclone formed on August 23 from the monsoon trough across the western Pacific Ocean. Moving westward, Omar slowly intensified into a tropical storm, although another tropical cyclone nearby initially impeded further strengthening. After the two storms became more distant, Omar quickly strengthened into a powerful typhoon. On August 28, it made landfall on Guam with winds of 195 km/h (120 mph). The typhoon reached its peak intensity the next day, with estimated 1‑minute winds of 240 km/h (150 mph), making it a "super typhoon" according to the Joint Typhoon Warning Center (JTWC). Omar weakened significantly before striking eastern Taiwan on September 4, proceeding into eastern China the next day and dissipating on September 9.

On Guam, Omar caused one death and $457 million (1992 USD) in damage. Strong gusts up to 248 km/h (154 mph) left nearly the entire island without power for several days. The outages disrupted the water system and prevented the island-based JTWC from issuing advisories for 11 days. Omar damaged or destroyed 2,158 houses, leaving 3,000 people homeless. In response to the destruction, the island's building codes were updated to withstand winds of 250 km/h (155 mph), and insurance companies discontinued new policies for structures not made of concrete. While passing well north of the Philippines, the typhoon killed 11 people and wrought ₱903 million ($35.4 million) worth of damage to 538 houses. Omar then brushed the southern islands of Japan with strong gusts and light rainfall, causing ¥476 million JPY (US$3.8 million) in crop losses. In Taiwan, scattered flooding caused three deaths and $65 million in damage, mostly to agriculture.

Typhoon Soudelor

Typhoon Soudelor, known in the Philippines as Typhoon Hanna, was the third most intense tropical cyclone worldwide in 2015 after Hurricane Patricia and Cyclone Pam as well as the strongest tropical cyclone of the 2015 Pacific typhoon season. Soudelor had severe impacts in the Northern Mariana Islands, Taiwan, and eastern China, resulting in 40 confirmed fatalities. Lesser effects were felt in Japan, South Korea and the Philippines. The thirteenth named storm of the annual typhoon season, Soudelor formed as a tropical depression near Pohnpei on July 29. The system strengthened slowly at first before entering a period of rapid intensification on August 2. Soudelor made landfall on Saipan later that day, causing extensive damage. Owing to favorable environmental conditions, the typhoon further deepened and reached its peak intensity with ten-minute maximum sustained winds of 215 km/h (130 mph) and a central atmospheric pressure of 900 hPa (mbar; 26.58 inHg) on August 3. The Joint Typhoon Warning Center assessed one-minute sustained winds at 285 km/h (180 mph), making Soudelor a Category 5-equivalent super typhoon. Steady weakening ensued thereafter as the storm moved generally west-northwest. Soudelor made landfall over Hualien, Taiwan, late on August 7 and emerged over in the Taiwan Strait early the next day. The typhoon soon moved inland over eastern China and degraded to a tropical depression by August 9.

Soudelor is the second worst storm to strike Saipan in the Northern Mariana Islands in nearly 30 years (following Super Typhoon Yutu). Hundreds of homes were damaged or destroyed and power was expected to take a month to restore. Two people died in Guam due to rip currents. In Taiwan, torrential rains and destructive winds caused widespread damage and disruptions. A record-breaking 4.85 million households lost power on the island. At least 8 people died and 420 others sustained injury there; a ninth person died in the storm's aftermath. Portions of eastern China saw their heaviest rains in 100 years, resulting in deadly floods and landslides. Typhoon Soudelor killed 45 people in eastern China after parts of the country were hit by the heaviest rains in a century. Total economic losses were counted to be ¥24.627 billion (US$3.97 billion).

Tzu Chi

Buddhist Compassion Relief Tzu Chi Foundation, Republic of China, known for short as the Tzu Chi Foundation (Chinese: 慈濟基金會; literally "Compassionate Relief"), is a Taiwanese international humanitarian and non-governmental organization (NGO) with over 10 million members worldwide throughout 47 countries. It is operated by a worldwide network of volunteers and employees and has been awarded a special consultative status at the United Nations Economic and Social Council.The Tzu Chi Foundation was founded by Master Cheng Yen, a Taiwanese Buddhist nun, or bhikkhuni, in 1966 as a Buddhist humanitarian organization. The foundation has several sub-organizations such as the Tzu Chi International Medical Association (TIMA) and also the Tzu Chi Collegiate Youth Association (Tzu Ching) (Chinese: 慈濟大專靑年聯誼會 (慈靑)), Tzu Chi volunteers and relief workers are mostly recognizable worldwide by their blue and white uniforms called, in Chinese: 藍天白雲, lántiān báiyún, ( lit. 'blue sky, white clouds'). The foundation's work includes medical aid, disaster relief, and environmental work such as recycling.

While Tzu Chi has a policy of being secular in its humanitarian work, Dharma teachings are often integrated into its practices for volunteers. Cheng Yen is considered to be one of the "Four Heavenly Kings" of Taiwanese Buddhism, and Tzu Chi itself is considered to be one of the "Four Great Mountains", or four major Buddhist organizations of Taiwanese Buddhism along with Fo Guang Shan, Dharma Drum Mountain, and Chung Tai Shan.

Xinhai Constructed Wetland

The Xinhai Constructed Wetland (Chinese: 新海人工溼地; pinyin: Xīnhǎi Réngōng Shīdì) is a constructed wetland in Banqiao District, New Taipei, Taiwan.

Tropical cyclones of the 1996 Pacific typhoon season


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