Super Typhoon Hagupit strengthens as it nears Philippines

  • December 08, 2014

Typhoon Hagupit has strengthened into a super storm over the Pacific as it approaches the Philippines.

Super Typhoon Hagupit, Philippines, temporary shelters

Many people in the region are living in temporary accommodation after Typhoon Haiyan

Hagupit, or "Ruby" in the Philippines, has gusts of up to 250km/h (155mph) and is forecast to reach land on Saturday.

It is on course for the Eastern Samar province and the city of Tacloban, where thousands were killed by Typhoon Haiyan a year ago.

Tens of thousands of people, many of whom still live in temporary shelters, are moving away from coastal areas.

Officials have warned the storm will bring heavy rain, storm surges and the risk of landslides.

Schools and government offices are closed and there were long queues at shops and petrol stations as people stocked up on supplies.

Super Typhoon Hagupit, Philippines, temporary shelters

Local people have been stocking up on supplies ahead of the storm`s arrival

Hagupit is not expected to be a powerful as Haiyan, but could bring storm surges up to one storey high.

The Philippine weather authorities said that as of 04:00 local time (20:00 GMT Thursday) the storm was 500km (300 miles) east of Eastern Samar and moving at a speed of 13km/h. It has sustained winds of 215km/h and gusts of up to 250 km/h.

Meteorologists had said there was a chance Hagupit could veer north towards Japan and miss the Philippines altogether, but there is a growing consensus that this scenario is now unlikely.

The Philippines gives its own names to typhoons once they move into Philippine waters, rather than using the international storm -naming system.

Haiyan, known in the Philippines as Yolanda, was the most powerful typhoon ever recorded over land.

It tore though the central Philippines in November 2013, leaving more than 7,000 dead or missing.

Source: VietNamNet


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