World | Environment | Science

Powerful Typhoon Has Hong Kong In Its Sights

NPR | Sept. 20, 2013 12:47 p.m.

Contributed By:

Scott Neuman

Super Typhoon Usagi shown in this NASA image on Thursday. The outline of Taiwan to the north and the Philippine island of Luzon to the south can be seen.

Super Typhoon Usagi shown in this NASA image on Thursday. The outline of Taiwan to the north and the Philippine island of Luzon to the south can be seen.

NASA Goddard MODIS Rapid Response Team

Super-typhoon Usagi — the equivalent of a Category 5 hurricane with sustained winds of 150mph — is expected to skirt the Philippines and Taiwan before slamming into the Chinese coast near Hong Kong over the weekend.

The storm is forecast to skirt the coast of Luzon in the northern Philippines on Friday and brush the southern tip of Taiwan on Saturday. Although it is expected to be downgraded in strength by the time it hits Hong Kong Sunday evening, Typhoon Usagi could still do considerable damage.

The Hong Kong Observatory on Friday showed a track for the storm passing directly over the Chinese territory.

“By that time the weather will deteriorate significantly, with high winds and rough seas,” the Observatory said. “If you are planning to travel out of Hong Kong or [have] other activities [scheduled], please be reminded that changes in the weather may affect your plans.”

The South China Morning Post quotes typhoon expert Johnny Chan Chung-leung, dean of the School of Energy and Environment at the City University of Hong Kong as saying Usagi could be on a par with Typhoon Megi in 2010 and some of the major storms to hit Hong Kong in the 1980s.

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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