Super Typhoon Forecast to Hit Philippines Saturday

Super Typhoon Mangkhut threatens China

Super Typhoon Mangkhut threatens China

In this Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2018, NASA satellite image, Super Typhoon Mangkhut churns west towards the Philippines.

More than five million people were said to be at risk from Mangkhut but thousands evacuated ahead of the storm making landfall including friends and loved ones of Honolulu Pastor Abigaile Corpuz.

Super typhoon Mangkhut is approaching the Philippines with estimated 167 miles per hour winds and gusts to 200 miles per hour, threatening a devastating impact to the northern tip of the main island of Luzon when it makes landfall on Saturday.

Saving lives was paramount and it was too soon to know the extent of Mangkhut's devastation, said Francis Tolentino, an adviser to Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte and disaster response coordinator.

Officials said other northern provinces had started evacuating residents from high-risk areas, including in northern mountain provinces prone to landslides.

Residents stand by a flooded road following the onslaught of Typhoon Mangkhut in Tuguegarao city in Cagayan province, northeastern Philippines, on September 15.

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In Hong Kong residents have taped up windows and stocked up on water and supplies after authorities warned the storm could be one of the worst to ever hit the city.

Mangkhut has a diameter of about 900 km (559 miles) and gathered pace as it reached the Philippines, but has since slowed, with wind speeds falling to 180 kph (112 mph).

Mangkhut, the Thai name for the mangosteen fruit of southeast Asia, was expected to skirt around 100km south of Hong Kong and veer westwards towards the Chinese coastline of Guangdong province, as well as the gambling hub of Macau straddling the Pearl River Delta.

"We believe there has been a lot of damage", said Social Welfare Secretary Virginia Orogo as thousands of evacuees took refuge in emergency shelters.

"Almost all of the buildings here have been damaged, the roofs were blown away", said Rogelio Sending, a government official in Tuguegarao, the capital of Cagayan.

Hong Kong authorities have been warning residents about the storm for days, and come Saturday, grocery stores were packed with people stocking up on goods.

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Police also said a body had been found in a river in Manila.

Gusty winds with occasional moderate to heavy rains are expected over Visayas, while scattered light to moderate to at times heavy rains over Palawan, Zamboanga Peninsula, Northern Mindanao and CARAGA. Airlines such as its flagship carrier, Cathay Pacific, canceled many flights last week.

An advisory on the Changi Airport website states: "Due to Typhoon Mangkhut, flights to and from Hong Kong, Macau, Guangzhou and Shenzhen may be affected".

In nearby Fujian province in China, 51,000 people were evacuated from fishing boats and around 11,000 vessels returned to port on Saturday morning.

The Philippines is no stranger to severe weather - it sees an average of 20 typhoons and storms each year.

Mr Ka-chiu added: "Each department must have a sense of crisis, make a comprehensive assessment and plan, and prepare for the worst".

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10 hurricane signal, the top level warning, at 9:40 a.m. on Sunday, as typhoon Mangkhut hit Hong Kong after it has left at least 25 people dead in the Philippines. It's only the 15th time in the last 60 years that a T10 alert has been hoisted; the last was for super typhoon Hato last year.

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