Super Typhoon Mawar slams into Guam with damaging winds, heavy rain

Super Typhoon Mawar roared through Guam on Wednesday, whipping the U.S. Pacific territory with damaging winds and heavy rains.

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Residents in Guam woke up Thursday to assess the damage after a night of howling winds and lightning storms from Mawar, which hit the island with maximum sustained winds of 140 mph, The New York Times reported.

“We’re looking out our door and what used to be a jungle looks like toothpicks -- it looks like a scene from the movie ‘Twister,’ with trees just thrashed apart,” meteorologist Landon Aydlett told The Associated Press. “Most of Guam is dealing with a major mess that’s gonna take weeks to clean up.”

The storm was upgraded to a super typhoon late Wednesday as maximum sustained winds topped 150 mph, the Times reported. Mawar snapped coconut and mango trees and knocked out power to much of the island.

According to the Guam Power Authority, power was lost in all but 1,000 of the island’s 52,000 homes and businesses, according to Reuters.

Guam Gov. Lou Leon Guerrero urged residents to stay at home until conditions are declared safe for travel in a Facebook message on Wednesday.

Guerrero has compared the storm to Typhoon Karen in 1962, which flattened much of the island, according to Reuters.

President Joe Biden approved an emergency declaration for the island on Tuesday, CNN reported.

Mawar is the strongest typhoon to hit Guam, a territory of approximately 150,000 people, since 2002, according to the AP.

“Stay calm, stay informed and stay safe,” Guerrero said. “We will get through this storm as we have in many, many other storms.”

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