Workers ride past fishing boats moored in a shelter at Nanfangao harbour in Yilan on August 6, 2015 as typhoon Soudelor approaches eastern Taiwan. The strongest typhoon of the year was bearing down on Taiwan's east coast on August 6, forcing the evacuation of more than 2,000 from outlying islands popular with tourists. AFP PHOTO / Sam YehSAM YEH/AFP/Getty Images
Final preparations in Taiwan ahead of typhoon Soudelor
02:35 - Source: CNN

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Soudelor is expected to strengthen again before making landfall

Storm's winds peaked Monday at 180 mph

CNN  — 

Typhoon Soudelor, while no longer strong enough to be classified as a super typhoon, remained a powerful cyclone Wednesday that is taking direct aim at Taiwan and China, threatening damaging winds, destructive storm surge and flooding rainfall.

The storm’s winds peaked Monday at 180 miles per hour, making it the strongest typhoon so far this year, according to the Joint Typhoon Warning Center. Winds on Wednesday were churning at 115 mph.

The storm is forecast to strengthen again before making landfall and will likely be the equivalent of a Category 3 or Category 4 hurricane when it hits Taiwan.

Current projections put it over the island early Saturday morning local time, before moving on to mainland China on Saturday night.

The West Pacific Basin has seen a total of 10 typhoons so far in 2015. Of those, five have been super typhoons, which is more than the average for the whole year.

A typhoon becomes a super typhoon when it has winds equal to or greater than 150 mph.