Manila, Thousands of people have begun

evacuating coastal areas of the Philippines as a super typhoon heads

towards the country.

Typhoon Mangkhut, packing winds of 255km/h (160mph), is

due to make landfall on the northern tip of the main island of Luzon by

the weekend.

Schools and offices are being closed and farmers are racing to

save crops.

Ten million people are in the path of the storm, along with

millions more in coastal areas of southern China.

The Philippines is hit by about 20 typhoons and storms a year.

Forecasters say Mangkhut is the strongest so far in 2018 – 900km in

diameter, with sustained winds of 205 km/h.

Authorities in the Philippines say they expect storm surges of

up to 7m (23 feet) and are warning that heavy rains could trigger

landslides and flash floods.

The country’s deadliest storm on record is super typhoon Haiyan,

which killed more than 5,000 people and affected millions in 2013.

In Hong Kong preparations are already under way for the

storm, although it is not expected to hit until Sunday, the BBC

reported.

Source: Oman News Agency