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9:45 a.m. Friday, Nov. 8, Philippines time: What a storm. Haiyan has begun crossing the islands of the central Philippines and remains an immensely powerful cyclone, packing sustained 184-mph winds and 224-mph gusts at its center. Its eye remains massive, and its outer bands extend from northeast of Ilocos Norte all the way to the south end of Mindanao and beyond. Joint Typhoon Warning Center forecasts Haiyan to remain a Category 5-equivalent cyclone through Saturday afternoon.

Manila should remain safely out of Haiyan’s 40-mph windbands, but the central Philippines is in for a major pounding. Vietnam is next on Haiyan’s itinerary, forecast to plow ashore a mid-morning Sunday near Da Nang and Hue, still packing a big punch, 115-mph sustained winds and 144-mph gusts. Prayers for the good folk in both countries.

Super Typhoon 31W (Haiyan) # 1: Boracay bound3:30 a.m. Friday, Nov. 8, Philippines time: It's not headed toward major U.S. facilities, but Super Typhoon Haiyan is seriously worth noting. Headed toward the resort of Boracay in the central Philippines, Haiyan is packing Category 5-equivalent sustained winds of 196 mph and gusts up to 236 at its center -- easily the most powerful cyclone I've ever seen in my years of following these things.

Haiyan is due to pass through the Philippines late tonight, then continue toward landfall near Da Nang, Vietnam, at mid-afternoon Sunday, still as a significant typhoon.


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