Severe typhoon damage on CNMI's Saipan

2:46 pm on 3 August 2015

Homes and infrastructure on Saipan in the Northern Marianas have suffered severe damage after the island took the brunt of Typhoon Soudelor on Sunday night.

Our correspondent, Mark Rabago, says hardly a building has been spared and the vegetation is battered.

The storm had sustained winds of 170 kilometres per hour when it hit Saipan but weather officials say they could reach 266 kilometres an hour by Wednesday.

Mr Rabago says the damage is unbelievable.

"It's utter devastation. All the trees are bent like tooth picks. Light material houses with thin roofs and light materials, they're gone. Everybody is in shock right now. This is the worst typhoon I have experienced in my 15 years living here on Saipan."

Typhoon Soudelor is expected to lose intensity toward the end of the week when it is projected to be near Taiwan.

Initial damage from Typhoon Soudelor in Saipan

Initial damage from Typhoon Soudelor in Saipan Photo: Mark Rabago