Typhoon Nock-Ten crashed into the Philippines on Christmas Day, putting a dampener on celebrations in Asia's largest Catholic nation. Nock-Ten battered the island nation with winds of 185km/h, with some gusts up 255km/h.
When the storm made landfall on Sunday night in Catanduanes province, power and communications lines were knocked down. There were no immediate reports of injuries, according to local officials.
Nock-Ten, with a 500km rain band, is expected to travel westward across the main island of Luzon and pass close to the capital, Manila, before heading toward the South China Sea.
The Philippine weather agency raised typhoon warnings, grounding flights and docking ships. Officials warned of storm surges in coastal villages, flash floods and landslides, and asked villagers to evacuate to safer grounds.
With Christmas celebrations front of mind, many citizens did not heed evacuation orders. Gov. Miguel Villafuerte of Camarines Sur province tried to lure people to evacuation centres with the promise of 'lechon' - a local roast pig delicacy. "I know it's Christmas ... but this is a legit typhoon," Villafuerte tweeted. "Please evacuate, we'll be having lechon at evacuation centres."
Camarines Sur officials targeted about 50,000 families (some 250,000 people) for evacuation by Saturday night, but the number who responded was initially far below expectations. This forced Vice Gov. Shirley Abundo to order a forced evacuation of villagers.
In November 2013, Typhoon Haiyan battered the Philippines, leaving more than 7,300 people dead or missing and displacing more than 5 million.
Filipinos shared scenes of the approaching Typhoon Nock-Ten on social media: