Powerful typhoon heads for Japan

| Monday, July 7, 2014, 5:39 p.m.

TOKYO — Japan was bracing for destructive winds and huge waves as a powerful typhoon churned Monday toward the southern islands of Okinawa after sparing the Philippines.

Typhoon Neoguri is expected to reach Okinawa early Tuesday, packing sustained wind of 123 miles per hour and gusts up to 168 mph, the Japan Meteorological Agency said. It said the storm could be one of the strongest to hit Japan in decades, generating waves up to 46 feet high.

“There is a risk of unprecedentedly strong winds and torrential rains. Please refrain from nonessential outdoor activities,” Meteorological Agency official Satoshi Ebihara told reporters at a news conference.

The agency issued a special warning for violent winds and flood tides.

Television reports showed workers in Okinawa tying braces onto palm trees to help minimize damage.

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