Typhoon Usagi has been upgraded to a super typhoon as it heads toward Taiwan followed by Southeast China, says an Accuweather report.
Usagi’s maximum sustained winds were registered at 160 mph (257 kph) Thursday night local time (Thursday EDT), which increased its status to super typhoon.
A super typhoon is the equivalent of a strong Category 4 or 5 hurricane in the Atlantic, with maximum sustained winds of at least 150 mph (241 kph).
Accuweather says Usagi could strengthen further Friday as it barrels toward Taiwan.
The report says that while Taiwan’s mountainous terrain will weaken Usagi slightly, it should still be close to super typhoon status when it reaches the far southern coast Saturday morning local time.
Conditions are expected to deteriorate across Taiwan all day Friday as wind and rain increase and flooding along the eastern coast becomes a real threat.
Wind gusts up to 140 mph (225 kph) could cause widespread destruction in far southern Taiwan Saturday morning. Such powerful winds are likely to cause major to severe damage to well-framed houses, and to snap or uproot many trees.
Residents should expect lengthy power outages.
Elsewhere across Taiwan, gusts are expected to range from 90 to 120 mph (145 to 193 kph).
In addition to the concern over loss of lives and property will be a devastating storm surge of 10 to 18 feet (3 to 5 meters) along the southeastern coast of Taiwan, as torrential rain pours down on the island. Image/AccuWeather.com