Super Typhoon ‪Soudelor‬‬

Monday 10th Aug 2015 by theWeather Club

Image: Super Typhoon Soudelor, as seen from the International Space Station, on 4th August 2015 (Image by Kimiya Yui)

A powerful typhoon brought chaos to Taiwan and parts of south-eastern China in early August, leaving at least 9 dead and millions of homes left without power.

Known in the Philippines as Typhoon Hanna, Soudelor began life as the most intense tropical cyclone of the Northern Hemisphere 2015 typhoon season, striking the Northern Mariana Islands before being downgraded to weak tropical cyclone impacting East China.

Soudelor made landfall on Saipan on 3rd August, causing extensive damage and reaching peak intensity with winds of 130 mph (with one-minute sustained winds of 180 mph recorded) and an atmospheric pressure of 900 hPa on 3rd August, making it a Category 5-equivalent super typhoon at its peak.

Soudelor then made landfall over Taiwan late on 7th August, leaving at least five people dead, and went on to strike Fujian province late on the 8th August, bringing rains and gale force winds which triggered landslides in at least one village. One coastal area saw more than 50 cm of rain in 24 hours – the heaviest for a century.

"I've never seen such a powerful typhoon in my 60 years," one resident in the eastern Taitung county told Taiwan's Formosa TV.