Soudelor downgraded to "severe typhoon"

Soudelor downgraded to "severe typhoon"

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The eye of Typhoon Soudelor as it moves towards the west Pacific.
Photo: AFP

The Hong Kong Observatory has now downgraded Soudelor from a super typhoon to a “severe typhoon”. The storm’s wind speeds continue to drop, but HKO warned it could pick up again as it approaches Taiwan. The US Navy’s Joint Typhoon Warning Centre had downgraded Soudelor from super typhoon yesterday, even though its winds were still at 175 km/h.

On Tuesday Soudelor had developed into the world’s most powerful storm of the year, but then began to lose power.

The observatory announced the severe typhoon rating last night and forecast it would remain this way all today.

 

But forecasters said the storm was expected to grow into a super typhoon again tomorrow before it hits Taiwan.

 

According to the HKO, typhoon Soudelor is the equal seventh-strongest storm to affect the region in the past six years.

On its approach to Taiwan Soudelor will brush past the Philippines, which is still reeling from flash flooding and heavy rain that has killed at least seven people, including four children in the south.

Taiwan is bracing itself for the tropical cyclone, which is expected to make landfall before tomorrow evening, by preparing emergency food and water supplies.

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