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PHOTOS: Typhoon Soudelor Ransacks Remote Island of Saipan

By By Katy Galimberti, Staff Writer
August 09, 2015, 1:14:04 AM EDT

Once-Super Typhoon Soudelor pummeled the island of Saipan in the Western Pacific ocean on its path to Taiwan and China this week.

Soudelor slammed Saipan with the intensity of a Category 2 hurricane on Sunday night, local time. Winds were measured up to 105 mph as the storm hit. However, winds may have been stronger than those reports, AccuWeather Meteorologist Eric Leister said.

"Soudelor was going through a period of rapid intensification as it passed over Saipan so even stronger winds may have occurred," he said.

Once-Super Typhoon Soudelor Hammers Saipan, Leaves Widespread Damage


In Saipan, a U.S. commonwealth with a population of 53,000, fierce winds and drenching rain left a trail of damage.

According to the Red Cross, nearly 500 people spent Monday night in several government shelters.

"The storm took out power, water and sewage facilities and blocked major roadways. Power and water supplies may not be restored for several weeks," the Red Cross said in a press release.

As of Wednesday, some residents have not had running water or electricity for four days. The Federal Agency of Emergency Management (FEMA) was called in by local officials to assist in the recovery process.

President Obama declared the Northern Mariana Island, including Saipan, under a State of Disaster on Thursday

Soudelor charged directly over the island, resulting in widespread damage.

Typhoon Soudelor Eyes Taiwan With Damaging Winds, Flooding Rain; China Next in Line
West Pacific Typhoon & Tropical Storm Center
AccuWeather Forecast for Taipei

The storm reached peak strength after slamming the island, becoming the strongest tropical storm of the year between Saipan and Taiwan.

Taiwan is bracing for landfall Friday night into early Saturday with landfall expected in eastern China on Saturday night, Leister said.








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