This story was updated at 12:40 p.m. Eastern US time on November 9.
One of the most powerful typhoons on record slammed into the Philippines on November 7–8, 2013. Wind and flood damage to the region was expected to be extensive, but impassable roads and hampered communications systems made it difficult to assess the full impact to life and property.
Super Typhoon Haiyan (locally named Yolanda) made its first landfall at 4:40 a.m. local time (20:40 Universal Time) on November 7. Preliminary reports suggested the storm roared ashore near Guinan (Samar Province), where ground stations recorded sustained winds of 235 kilometers (145 miles) per hour and gusts to 275 kilometers (170 miles) per hour. According to remote sensing data from the Joint Typhoon Warning Center, sustained winds approached 315 kph (195 mph) just three hours before landfall, with gusts to 380 kph (235 mph).
The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite acquired this natural color image of Super Typhoon Haiyan over the Philippines. The image was acquired at 2:10 p.m. local time (5:10 UTC) on November 8, 2013, when winds were estimated to be 270 kph (165 mph). The storm made landfall five different times as it skirted through the chain of islands. Click here to see the monster storm on November 7, before it roared ashore.