Friday, November 8, 2013

Super Typhoon Haiyan Assaults Philipines

Strongest Landfalling Storm on Record

Here, we call the hurricanes.  There, it's typhoons.  Whatever the name of the systems, this tropical system, Super Typhoon Haiyan, is a history maker, and not in a good way.  Here, the massive storm would be a high end category five.  (Cat 5 starts at 165 mph.)

visible satellite image courtesy NOAA, NASA
Haiyan, the strongest typhoon on record at the time of landfall has hit the Philippines, with sustained winds of 190 - 195 mph, and gusts as high as 230 mph.  The assault continues this morning.

There are massive power outages, homes and other buildings have been swamped by storm surge, and there is an unconfirmed report of an entire  hotel collapsing.  Those are just preliminary reports, since phone lines are down, making it impossible to reach many areas.

Preparations were extensive.  Nearly three quarters of a million people were evacuated. Let's hope the shelters stand up.  The military is on standby for the aftermath, which isn't going to be pretty.  There are ships, helicopters, and cargo planes ready to go.

Our prayers are with the people of the Philippines today.