Tropical Storm NOUL is strengthening as it moves north-west over South China Sea. On 17 September at 0.00 UTC, its centre was located over the sea approximately 350 km south-east of Parcel Islands, and 550 km west of Qui Nhon City (coastal-central Vietnam) with maximum sustained wind of 83 km/h.
NOUL is expected to pass south of Parcel Islands in the morning of 17 September, and then it is expected to make landfall in the morning of 18 September over Thua Thien Hue Province (central Vietnam). After that, NOUL is forecast to move west over land, reaching southern Laos in the early afternoon of 18 September.
National authorities have started preparations to evacuate about 548,000 people across central coast provinces, ahead of the landfall. Copernicus EMS was activated in rapid mapping mode (EMSR464) on 16 September, to support damage assessment operations.
On 17-18 September, heavy to very heavy rainfall, thunderstorms are forecast for central areas of Vietnam, from Ha Tinh to Quang Ngai Provinces, and moderate to heavy rain is expected over central-south, and central-north provinces.