Super Typhoon Nepartak is currently classified as a Category 5 storm, with winds of more than 165 mph, and it's heading straight for Taiwan.
In the face of a storm of such jaw-dropping power, Taiwan is bracing for disaster. The government has issued sea and land typhoon warnings for the entire country.
Nepartak is expected to make landfall in Taiwan early Friday local time, and regional government officials have already begun evacuations. Officials told BBC they had evacuated about 3,000 tourists from the popular Taiwanese vacation spots Green and Orchid Islands.
Much of the central and east coast areas of the country are being warned of “extremely torrential rain,” according to the Central Weather Bureau. Accuweather meanwhile calls the expected rain and potential flooding “life threatening” — up to 30 inches of rain could fall in some regions of the island nation.
Nepartak — with a name taken from a Micronesian warrior — qualifies as a super typhoon because it has sustained wind speeds of at least 145mph for at least one minute.
Though the storm will most likely weaken by the time it makes landfall — and will be further slowed by Taiwan’s mountains — Nepartak is expected to result in devastation with flash flooding, widespread tree damage, power outages, and structural damage.
The storm is currently expected to leave Taipei relatively unscathed, but rain is expected to cause serious problems throughout the country. According to Accuweather, residents and visitors in both China and Japan should also prepare for rain as heavy downpours are expected thanks to Nepartak, particularly in China’s eastern Fujian Province.