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Typhoon Soudelor: This Year’s Most Powerful Typhoon on the Planet Threatens Taiwan, China after Slamming Saipan

( [email protected] ) Aug 04, 2015 09:15 PM EDT
Super typhoon Soudelor, the Earth's most most powerful storm this year packing with of 180 mph, the equivalent of a Category 5 hurricane, is threatening Asia as it enters the northern tip part of the Philippines Wednesday morning where it is expected to heavy rains and generate strong waves, making sea travel dangerous.
Satellite image released by NOAA on super typhoon Soudelor. Twitter

Super typhoon Soudelor, the Earth's most most powerful storm this year packing with of 180 mph, the equivalent of a Category 5 hurricane, is threatening Asia as it enters the northern tip part of the Philippines Wednesday morning where it is expected to heavy rains and generate strong waves, making sea travel dangerous.

However, the syper typhoon, nicknames Hanna by the Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical Astronomical Service or Pagasa, will not make landfall, however and is targeting Japan, Taiwan and China.

Weathermen forecasted the storm to hit Taiwan and China by Friday and Saturday but it is expected to weaken to a Category 3 or 4 storm when it landfall.

"There is growing concern that Taiwan and the southern Ryukyu Islands will have to contend with Soudelor as early as Thursday night or Friday with impacts lasting into early next week across eastern China," AccuWeather meteorologist Eric Leister said.

Meanwhile, Saipan Governor Ralph DLG Torres on Monday declared "a state of disaster and significant emergency" in the island as Super Typhoon Soudelor slammed the island causing widespread damages.

Saipan, one of the Northern Mariana Islands with 48,000-population, is a U.S. commonwealth in the Western Pacific.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's National Weather Service in Guam said Soudelor struck Saipan on Sunday into Monday. The super storm has gained strength as it heads towards Taiwan, said the Associated Press.

The island felt the full force of the typhoon around 11 p.m. Sunday up to 1 a.m. Monday, weather forecasters said.

The NWS said the typhoon generated waves up to 30 feet high that hit the island. The high tide also intensified the effect of the storm causing flooding in the streets of Saipan, the report added.

Hundreds of residents in Saipan have to be evacuated and are now living in temporary shelters. The powerful winds of Soudelor knocked down power lines, damaged power plants, and ripped off roofs and most of the island is still out of power and water services.

Many of the roads in Saipan remain impassable to all types of vehicles because of the flooding and debris that littered the roads.

"I've seen multiple primary power poles down. I've seen cars flipped over the road. I've seen lots of torn roofs," said John Hirsh, executive director of the American Red Cross in Saipan, reported 10 News.

Hirsh said the typhoon left a trail of destruction across the island and added that an initial assessment shows extensive damage across Saipan.

The National Weather Service said Soudelor is a Pohnpeian word for a legendary chief or ruler, Pohnpeian is a language spoken on the island of Pohnpei in the Caroline Islands.

The typhoon was stronger than Cyclone Pam, the previous strongest storm of 2015, which killed at least 15 people when it slammed into Vanuatu, also in the Pacific, five months ago.

Tags : Saipan, Taiwan, China, super typhoon, category 5 hurricane, state of disaster and emergency, most powerful storm, soudelor, National Weather Service, Ralph Torres, NOAA, Philippines, hanna, Japan