Manila: Storm Saola intensified into a super typhoon at dawn on Sunday, threatening to dump heavy rain and severe winds in the northern Philippines, the Philippine state weather bureau said.
According to Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration, Saola could bring heavy rain in mountainous areas, which could trigger flooding and landslides.
Saola was last spotted over the coastal waters of Isabela province on the northern Luzon island, Xinhua news agency reported quoting the weather bureau.
Saola was blowing south-southwestward “slowly,” packing 185 km per hour winds and gusts of up to 230 km per hour.
“The southwest monsoon enhanced by Saola will bring occasional or monsoon rains over Luzon mainland and the Visayas regions in the central Philippines over the next three days,” the bureau warned.
Saola is the seventh typhoon to batter the archipelago country this year.
Located in the Pacific Ring of Fire, the Philippines is among the most disaster-prone countries globally, with active volcanoes, frequent earthquakes, and an average of 20 typhoons a year, causing floods and landslides.