Super Typhoon Meranti is now a Category 5 storm, packing maximum sustained winds up to 180 mph as it heads west-northwest in the western Pacific Ocean. Meranti has undergone rapid intensification since Sunday morning
Parts of Taiwan, the northern Philippines and southeastern China will see impacts from this dangerous typhoon over the next few days.
According to the Joint Typhoon Warning Center (JTWC), Meranti’s winds had increased from 85 mph to 180 mph in the 24 hours ending Monday 11 a.m. EDT. That’s a 95 mph increase in winds during that time, or more than double the rapid intensification criteria.
The 180 mph winds make Meranti the strongest tropical cyclone in the Northern Hemisphere so far this year, topping Super Typhoon Nepartak (175 mph) in early July.
Factors leading to the rapid strengthening include low wind shear and warm ocean temperatures.
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