Philippines, Hong Kong Brace for Super Typhoon Mangkhut

Clay Curtis
September 13, 2018

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

She said seven million others are at risk in the country, with the typhoon expected to boost the intensity of seasonal monsoon rains that have already caused widespread flooding in central Luzon, a mainly farming region north of capital Manila.

Mangkhut, the 22nd typhoon this year, will pass through the Philippines with estimated maximum sustained winds of 250 kilometres per hour (155 miles per hour), reported The Philippine Star.

According to the U.N. Global Disaster Alert and Coordination System, the super typhoon could affect as many as 43.4 million people before it fades away.

The Philippine Red Cross estimates three million Filipinos live in the direct path of Mangkhut, communications officer Mary Joy Evalarosa told AFP.

The typhoon, named Ompong in the Philippines, will bring heavy rains and storm surges on its trail. In 2013, Super Typhoon Haiyan which packed winds of as high as 315 kilometers per hour killed more than 6,300 people there.

Mangkhut is predicted to reach China's southern coast around Sunday, according to the Hong Kong Observatory.

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A prayer for deliverance from calamities will be recited in Catholic churches across the Philippines starting Thursday as the country braces for Typhoon Ompong (international name: Mangkhut), a powerful storm expected to hit northern Luzon.

Those cities will bear the brunt of the storm, which is due to make landfall in southern China early Monday morning.

Multiple Hong Kong airlines, including flag carrier Cathay Pacific, have announced they will waive charges for rebooking or re-routing flights arriving or departing the city during the worst of the storm.

The strongest typhoon to hit the Philippines this year is threatening the farmlands in Northern Luzon just before the rice and corn harvest.

Philippine Red Cross chairman Richard Gordon said: "We're anxious for the 10 million people in the Philippines living in the path of this destructive storm".

According to Hong Kong Observatory, Mangkhut will enter the South China Sea on Saturday. Wu said that the intensity level of Mangkhut is stronger than that of Florence.

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