Typhoon Molave, with wind speeds of 125 kilometers (77 miles) per hour and gusts of up to 150 kph (93.2 mph), left the main Philippine island of Luzon earlier on Monday, with heavy rain causing seven landslides and floods in 11 areas, the disaster agency said.
There were no reports of casualties, but 12 fishermen at sea failed to return to Catanduanes province off the country’s eastern coast. This was the 17th typhoon to hit the Philippines this year.
“This is a very strong typhoon that will impact a large area,” Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc said, urging provinces and cities in Molave’s path to prepare for its impact.
Phuc compared Molave to Typhoon Damrey in 2017, which killed more than 100 people in central Vietnam. He ordered boats ashore and told the security forces to get ready.
“Troops must deploy full force to support people, including mobilizing helicopters, tanks and other means of transportation if needed,” Phuc said in a statement.
Vietnam is prone to destructive storms and flooding due to its long coastline. About 11.8 million people in Vietnam’s costal provinces are exposed to the threat of intense flooding, with 35% of settlements located on crowded and eroding coastlines, a World Bank report said last week.
The region as a whole has suffered particularly heavy rainfall amid the onset of a La Nina weather system, which is characterized by unusually cold temperatures in the equatorial Pacific Ocean.