Strongest typhoon this year closes in on north Philippines

13 September, 2018, 18:16 | Author: Donnie King
  • ‘Mangkhut’ now a supertyphoon — US weather agency

Thousands of people have begun evacuating coastal areas of the Philippines as a super typhoon heads towards the country.

The typhoon, expected to be closer to south China by the weekend, will bring heavy rains and storm surges on its trail.

According to the Philippine Star, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration defines a "super typhoon" as a typhoon with "maximum sustained winds of 220 kilometers per hour".

Governor Manuel Mamba of the Philippines island of Cagayan said officials would start evacuating islanders on September 13.

A powerful typhoon is expected to make a landfall in the Philippines' main Luzon island on Saturday (Sept 15), prompting authorities to place 17 areas on alert and start evacuations.

Philippines' Office of Civil Defence chief Ricardo Jalad said low-lying areas in northern regions would be evacuated on Thursday.

"Its track and wind strength near the centre may change under the influence of the terrain of Luzon, but it is expected to remain in the category of super typhoon after entering the South China Sea", wrote the Hong Kong Observatory on its website. About 80 per cent of the United States territory was without power but it was restored by Thursday morning.

‘Mangkhut’ now a supertyphoon — US weather agency
Strongest typhoon this year closes in on north Philippines

On Guam, a U.S. territory, residents woke up on Tuesday to flooded streets, downed trees and widespread power outages after Mangkhut passed through overnight.

Ana, Cagayan on Thursday ahead of Typhoon Ompong's landfall. But Mr Mamba said: "I'm stressing that this one is very different, this is more complicated because of possible storm surges".

The storm may damage as many as 156,793 metric tons of rough rice and 257,100 metric tons of corn in the Philippines worth as much as 13.5 billion pesos ($250 million), Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Pinol wrote on his Facebook account Tuesday.

A missile test aboard a navy ship to be attended by President Rodrigo Duterte off northern Bataan province was cancelled due to the approaching typhoon.

In disaster-prone Philippines where about 20 cyclones pass each year, Mangkhut, which is named after a fruit in Thailand, is forecast to enter on Wednesday just as another storm left.

According to the observatory, Mangkhut is forecast to move towards the Philippine island of Luzon on Friday and Saturday.

Meanwhile, the US east coast braces as Hurricane Florence barrels towards the Carolinas, expected to make landfall late September 14 or early September 15.




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