Typhoon Maysak: Dramatic images from space show true scale of deadly typhoon as it heads towards the Philippines

Warnings of landslides and storm surges have been issued in the Philippines

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The Independent Online

Dramatic images taken from the International Space Station show the true scale and power of a super typhoon blamed for the deaths of four people on islands in the western Pacific.

Warnings of possible landslides and storm surges have been issued in the Philippines, as Typhoon Maysak was set to hit eastern coastal areas over the weekend.

Officials have said the typhoon has weakened since reaching Philippine waters – and was expected to further lose strength as it approached the coast.

Image taken by astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti from the International Space Station (AP Photo/NASA, Samantha Cristoforetti)

A ship rests on rocks on 29 March, 2015 after it ran aground during storms brought on by Super Typhoon Maysak (AFP PHOTO / Hiroyuki MORIHiroyuki Mori/AFP/Getty Images)

As of Thursday morning, the typhoon, situated about 569 miles north east of Borongan city, was carrying winds of 109mph and gusts of up to 124mph as it moved at about a rate of 12mph, Esperanza Cayanan, an officer of the government's weather bureau, said.

Forecasters have said storm surges of up to 10ft were possible on the eastern coast, with moderate to heavy rains expected within a 124 mile radius of the eye of the typhoon.

Rescue teams and relief goods have been prepared for when the typhoon makes landfall, which was expected on Saturday evening or early Sunday, according to an Associated Press report.

A low-level storm warning was expected to be issued today for the country's eastern provinces.

Cayanan said it was possible it could be downgraded to a storm or tropical depression as it weakened while crossing the land.

About 20 major typhoons pass through the Philippines each year, with the storms becoming increasingly fierce more recently, Reuters has reported.

In December last year it was reported that at least 21 people died after Typhoon Hagupit swept across the area.

Fearful of a repeat of the Super Typhoon Haiyan in November the previous year, which saw 7,300 people killed, the Philippine government evacuated thousands ahead of the storm.

They also placed the army on alert and distributed food and medical supplies to remote areas.

Additional reporting by AP and Reuters