Powerful Typhoon Rai Hits Central Philippines

Destructive winds hit central and eastern regions of the Philippines on Thursday afternoon, December 16, as Typhoon Rai, known locally as Typhoon Odette, prompted officials to force the evacuation of thousands of people.

The Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) put central provinces, such as Cebu, under a Signal 4 warning, meaning the storm’s wind speeds range between 106 mph and 136 mph, as the typhoon tracked westward.

Pagasa has also warned of storm surges reaching up to three meters in height.

Cebu City’s mayor ordered the forced evacuation of residents in coastal barangays and other hazard-prone areas ahead of the typhoon’s arrival, according to Cebu Daily News.

Video taken by Charies Flores shows wind and rain whipping through Cebu City on Thursday afternoon. Credit: Charies Flores via Storyful

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