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Residents Take Shelter as Typhoon Pelts Guam With Winds, Rain

More than 1,100 people took shelter as Typhoon Dolphin glanced off Guam, hammering the territory with high winds, rain and huge waves.
Charles Henry, 28, Clayton Faubion, 25, Charles Harstad, 23, and Jamal Arurag, 19, observe barreling waves behind the University of Guam Marine Lab on the island’s eastern coast during a powerful Pacific typhoon on Friday, May 15, 2015. Grace Garces Bordallo / AP

More than 1,100 people took refuge in shelters early Saturday as the center of a powerful Pacific typhoon glanced off Guam, hammering the U.S. territory with high winds, rain and huge waves.

The storm knocked out power, downed trees and canceled flights Friday as it lumbered through a channel between Guam and the tiny island of Rota.

Typhoon Dolphin packed maximum winds of 110 mph before its center started moving away from the tropical islands. The National Weather Service said gusts were expected to gradually decrease to "non-damaging" winds by sunrise.

One injury has resulted from the storm, and that person was taken to a Guam hospital, Department of Homeland Security spokeswoman Jenna Gaminde said. She had no additional information on the injury.

There also were reports of damaged power transformers, said Oyaol Ngirairikl with the Joint Information Center. Ngirairikl said more would be known about other damage from the storm later Saturday.

Weather service meteorologist Patrick Chen said earlier that the weather service lost radar, but satellite imagery indicated Typhoon Dolphin's center was moving away from the Marianas Islands, which include Guam.

He advised residents to stay indoors: "Don't venture outside because of down power lines or trees."

Guam is home to about 160,000 people. It is known for white beaches and historic World War II battle sites, and it depends heavily on tourism.

Residents began seriously preparing for the typhoon Thursday when Gov. Eddie Calvo ordered agencies to take special precautions. That set off longer lines at service stations and increased sales of bottled water.

Eight public schools served as emergency shelters. Three were at capacity early Saturday. Twenty-four pregnant women checked into Guam Memorial Hospital as a precaution, according to Calvo's office.


— The Associated Press