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Typhoon Nesat a Serious Threat to the Philippines

By Eric Leister, Meteorologist
September 27, 2011, 4:05:11 AM EDT

Typhoon Nesat, churning over the open Philippine Sea on Monday, looms as a serious threat to the Philippines.

As of early Monday, EDT, Nesat was centered about 200 miles to the east-northeast of Manila, Philippines; it was moving west-northwestward at 16 mph. The storm held top sustained winds of 90 mph with gusts to near 115 mph.

Nesat is heading into an environment favorable for additional strengthening. The cyclone is forecast to become a major typhoon as it moves west-northwestward during the next 24 hours.

On its projected course, Nesat poses a serious threat to the northern Philippines where landfall would happen in northeastern Luzon Island by late Monday or Monday night, EDT. At the time, Nesat could be the equivalent of a category four hurricane with maximum sustained winds potentially over 140 mph and peak gusts perhaps reaching 160 mph.

More than 100,000 people along the coast have been told to evacuate in advance of the storm.

Along with the threat of destructive winds, there is the risk of torrential rain that can instigate deadly floods and mudslides. Rainfall can be 10-20 inches and locally higher in the northern Philippines, primarily in Luzon Island.

Ultimately, Nesat could also target southeastern China, Vietnam and Laos. The storm could remain a typhoon as it approaches this region later next week. If the storm takes a track far enough south, it could bring heavy rainfall to areas that will be soaked by Tropical Storm Haitang earlier in the week. This could lead to a widespread threat for flooding and mudslides across parts of Indochina.

Meteorologist Bill Deger contributed to the content of this story

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