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Super Typhoon Mawar moves closer to the Philippines


Super Typhoon Mawar was moving west over the Pacific Ocean toward the Philippines on Saturday, days after the tropical cyclone brought damaging winds and rain to Guam.

As of Saturday morning, Mawar’s center was just over 700 miles east of Luzon, the country’s largest and most populous island, the Philippine meteorological agency said. Because the Philippines gives its own names to typhoons that enter its so-called area of responsibility, a large area of the Western North Pacific, the storm is known locally as Betty.

The storm was moving west at a brisk 17 mph with maximum sustained winds of 155 mph, according to the Joint Typhoon Warning Center, a weather agency operated by the U.S. Navy. That wind speed is equivalent to the force of a strong Category 4 hurricane in the United States.

Forecasters said the storm would most likely stay north of the Philippines and start to weaken early next week. But heavy rain, flooding, landslides and gale-force winds were expected in northern Luzon on Sunday or Monday, the Philippine weather agency said. Some areas of the country were also forecast to receive nearly 4 inches of rain by Tuesday morning.

Next week, as Mawar continues to head north, then northeast, the impact on Taiwan, China and South Korea could be minimal. Depending on the timing of other weather systems in the area, the storm could instead track farther west toward Taiwan, or northwest toward Japan.

Those developments wouldn’t come until late next week and into the following weekend, and a lot could change in the atmosphere within that time frame. As the storm moves north, whether toward or away from Japan, it is expected to weaken as it encounters cooler waters.

This article originally appeared in The New York Times.

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