Yilan (Taiwan), May 30 (AP) Typhoon Mawar lashed Taiwan's eastern coast with wind, rains and large waves Tuesday but largely skirted the island after giving a glancing blow to the northern Philippines. The storm was moving slowly toward southern Japan.

With waves crashing on the shoreline, residents of the Taiwanese fishing town of Yilan secured boats and homes against the stormy conditions.

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Although the slow-moving typhoon has lost some of its ferocity since smashing into Guam last week, forecasters in the Philippines said Mawar remained dangerous with maximum sustained winds of 155 kph and gusts of up to 190 kph.

“I'm on the roof, but I'm not being blown away by the wind,” Juliet Cataluna, a Batanes provincial official in the coastal town of Ivana told The Associated Press by cellphone. “I wish we'll really be spared from damages, our livelihood, our agricultural produce and our houses.”

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After seeing earlier forecasts that Mawar would be stronger, townspeople in Ivana placed sandbags on their tin roofs and covered glass windows with wooden boards. Cataluna added that she wrapped her avocados with sack cloth so they would not be blown off trees.

Town leaders used motorcycles to deliver constant typhoon updates and fortunately only light rains and occasional wind gusts have hit Ivana, she said.

The typhoon is offshore about 350 kilometres east of the Batanes capital, Basco, and is projected to shift northeast by Wednesday toward southern Japan. Strong winds were still forecast for Taiwan, and authorities in the Philippines warned against complacency, saying the risks from dangerous tidal surges, flash floods, landslides and typhoon-enhanced monsoon rains remain until Mawar has safely blown away.

More than 3,400 villagers remained in emergency shelters in northern provinces, flights to and from Batanes remained suspended and classes have not resumed in more than 250 cities and towns in the north, according to the Office of Civil Defence.

Winds lashed nearby Cagayan province on Monday, causing an unoccupied wharf warehouse to collapse and prompting more villagers to move to evacuation centres.

Mawar tore through Guam last week as the strongest typhoon to hit the US Pacific territory in over two decades, flipping cars, tearing off roofs and knocking down power. (AP)

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