Typhoon Haima shuts down Hong Kong
After battering the Philippines and causing massive damage, Super Typhoon Haima, hit Hong Kong a few hours ago. Haima is one of the strongest storms to slam Hong Kong this year; nearly 200 trees were down across the city and 740 flights have either been delayed or cancelled. Businesses, financial market and schools had already been shut and all forms of transport were affected.
What is a 'Super Typhoon'?
Powerful storms originating in the western Pacific and southeastern Indian oceans are referred to as typhoons by meteorologists. To be categorized as a typhoon, a tropical cyclone must reach sustained wind speeds of 74 miles per hour. According to National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, a storm that reaches surface winds of at least 150 miles/hour for 1-minute minimum is a 'Super Typhoon'.
Clockwise or counter-clockwise?
In the northern hemisphere, typhoons rotate counter-clockwise whereas in the southern hemisphere, they rotate clockwise. When equated with Hurricanes, a 'Super Typhoon' will be considered at par with a very strong category 4 or a category 5 level Hurricane.
Super Typhoon Haima
Super Typhoon Haima (Haima) is the 2nd-most intense tropical cyclone of 2016 originating in the North Pacific Ocean; it's also the eleventh typhoon of the annual typhoon season. Haima brought sustained winds of 225km/h, at par with a Category-4 hurricane, when it made landfall in northeast-Philippines on October 20. 100,000 people had been evacuated from the most vulnerable areas and there was widespread damage.
Haima batters Philippines; heads to Hong Kong
Haima was the second typhoon to hit Philippines this week; twelve people died, there was widespread damage to homes, power-lines and 50,000-60,000 hectares of farmland were also destroyed. Since 1950, this is only the third time such severe storms have hit the Philippines back-to-back. Village councillor, Willie Cabalteja, said "I'm 60 years old, this is the strongest typhoon I have ever seen."
Hong Kong issues Signal-8
Moving on from the Philippines, Haima was headed towards Hong Kong. Its surface winds' speed was 145kms/hour and was expected to make landfall in Hong Kong on October 21. Early morning today, the Hong Kong Observatory issued its third-highest storm warning, Signal No. 8,
Haima makes landfall in China
After soaking Hong Kong, Haima has made landfall in southern China, 110 kilometers from Hong Kong, a short while ago. The storm has been significantly downgraded as surface speeds were recorded at 60 kms/hour; the risk of flash flooding and landslides still remains.