A Halifax man living in the Philippines is experiencing the force of a super typhoon today.
Typhoon Haiyan is being called the most powerful storm to hit the Pacific this year, with winds of more than 200 km/h battering the string of islands.
Nearly 720,000 people were forced to evacuate their homes.
Anthony Marchione, who is a manager at an outsourcing company in Manila, said high winds and heavy rain has brought the city to a standstill.
He has experienced three big storms during the two years he has lived in the country, but this one has everyone’s attention.
He said he's in a safe building, but he is concerned about some of his coworkers weathering the storm.
“You know, obviously, a lot of people are very scared for loved ones who are in … the more provincial areas. It’s a scary situation any time a storm hits in the Philippines just because the infrastructure isn’t as secure as somewhere like Halifax,” said Marchione.
He said about one third of the 2,200 employees he manages have chosen to stay at home to ride out the storm.
Due to cut-off communications, it was impossible to know the full extent of casualties and damage. At least two people were electrocuted in storm-related accidents, one person was killed by a fallen tree and another was struck by lightning, official reports said.
Weather officials said Haiyan had sustained winds of 235 km/h with gusts of 275 km/h when it made landfall. That makes it the strongest typhoon this year, said Aldczar Aurelio of the government's weather bureau.