Super Typhoon Mangkhut threatens China

Super Typhoon Mangkhut threatens China

Super Typhoon Mangkhut is now heading for the Philippines.

More than 500 flights have been cancelled at one of the world's busiest airports as Hong Kong prepares for Typhoon Mangkhut after it lashed the Philippines, killing at least 12 people.

Authorities issued a red alert in Hong Kong and southern China as strong winds and heavy rains from Typhoon Mangkhut ripped through dense coastal cities, blowing out windows and flooding hotel lobbies, after it left at least 30 dead in the northern Philippines.

He says about 87,000 people evacuated from high-risk areas and advised them not to return home until the lingering danger has passed.

China and the Philippines agreed to postpone a visit by Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi that was to start Sunday due to the typhoon's onslaught, which caused almost 150 flights, a third of them worldwide, to be canceled and halted sea travel.

The Hong Kong government said Mangkhut will pose "a severe threat to the region" as many residents in the territory and Macau stocked up on food and supplies.

Moreover, Mangkhut will further gain strength in the open waters of South China Sea and become a Cat 4 Typhoon.

"Any land hit directly would see more significant and destructive impacts from the super typhoon due to its size and intensity".

Known locally as Ompong, Typhoon Mangkhut at one point had maximum gusts of 305 kph (190 mph) before it left the Philippines and moved towards Hong Kong and southern China, with wind speeds that reduced to 170 kph (106 mph) then to 160 kph in the evening.

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Guangdong is also China's most populous province, with a population of more than 100 million.

"The landslides happened as some residents returned to their homes after the typhoon", disaster response coordinator Francis Tolentino told DZMM Radio, adding that most of the 5.7 million people affected had made advance preparations.

There are immediate deaths reported but Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana says officials in northeastern Cagayan province where the typhoon slammed ashore before dawn are verifying the drownings of two children.

Also a young girl was found in the Marikina River in the eastern part of metropolitan Manila, which appeared to avoid major damage.

A government damage assessment was underway except in areas still being battered by winds and rain.

As the USA braces for the arrival of Hurricane Florence, a super typhoon is set to wreak havoc on south east Asia in the coming days before moving on to Hong Kong and the Chinese mainland.

Mangkhut will keep to a northwesterly track, bringing heavy rain and winds when it enters the autonomous region of Guangxi early on Monday, before weakening into a tropical depression as it arrives in southwestern Yunnan on Tuesday.

"As we go forward, this number will go higher", Ricardo Jalad, head of the Philippines' national civil defence office, told reporters about the biggest storm of the year in the region. Airlines such as flagship carrier Cathay Pacific canceled many flights last week. It's only the 15th time in the last 60 years that a T10 has been hoisted; the last was for Super Typhoon Hato last year.

Philippine authorities have said they are better prepared than in 2013, when Typhoon Haiyan devastated central areas of the country and killed 6,300 people.

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