Another massive storm on the other side of the world

Another massive storm on the other side of the world

by digby

How weird that these are happening everywhere. Whatever could be the cause?

Super Typhoon Manghut slammed into the Philippines early Saturday after thousands of people evacuated their homes to dodge the 550-mile wide storm, roaring across the Pacific with maximum sustained winds of 170 miles per hour.

The ferocity of the storm in some ways eclipsed Hurricane Florence on the other side of the world, pummeling the Mid-Atlantic Coast of the United States with life-threatening rains.

The eye of Mangkhut, known as Ompong in the Philippines, made landfall on the northern island of Luzon, the country’s rice and corn growing heartland, where more than four million people are at risk, early Saturday around 1:40 a.m.

The storm, gusting at speeds equivalent to a Category 5 hurricane, passed the American territory of Guam on Thursday, knocking out 80 percent of the island’s electricity and downing trees and power lines. Catch up on the rest of our storm coverage.
Wind, rain batter Luzon as storm makes landfall

By Friday evening, the northern and central portions of Luzon were already feeling the strength of Mangkhut, even as the eye of the hurricane was hours away from making landfall. When it slammed into the coast at around 1:40 a.m., with the eye making landfall over Baggao in Cagayan Province.

The maximum sustained wind speed of the typhoon had slowed to about 120 miles per hour as it reached Luzon’s shores, according to the national weather service, but gusts still reached up to 170 miles per hour.

Heavy rain and battering winds were reported in that province, with Manuel Mamba, the provincial governor, describing the capital as being “pummeled” during an telephone interview with the ABS-CBN News Channel.

Meanwhile, this storm isn't finished:

After the Philippines, the storm is predicted to pass Hong Kong on Sunday before slamming into the Chinese mainland on Monday morning.

The Hong Kong Observatory warned residents of the territory to “take suitable precautions and pay close attention to the latest information” on the storm.

In mainland China, the southern provinces of Guangdong, Guangxi and Hainan have ordered residents to seek shelter away from the coast.

The State Department in Washington issued a travel alert for Guangdong and Hainan, warning of “extremely high winds, dangerous storm tides, heavy rainfall, and possible flooding.”

Much of the planning for Mangkhut has been informed by Typhoon Haiyan, the devastating 2013 storm that led to the deaths of thousands of people and left more than four million people homeless.

That storm taught many lessons. Food and fresh water must be in position before a storm hits, as roads and airports may be closed for a week or more afterward because of fallen trees and other damage. Soldiers and police officers need to fan out to restore order as soon as the typhoon passes so civil society does not collapse in storm-ravaged areas. Evacuation centers need to be built on higher ground with stronger roofs.

Good lord.

As we watch this endless footage of Hurricane Florence, keep some good thoughts for our fellow humans going through the same thing over the next few days on the other side of the world.