Hundreds of thousands of people were evacuated in the central Philippines as Typhoon Melor battered the archipelago with heavy wind and rain on Sunday. The storm brought maximum sustained winds of around 125 mph, which equates to a strong Category 3 hurricane, by Monday morning. Melor, known in the Philippines as Nona, was expected to hit eastern island of Samar on Monday and move toward the country's largest island, Luzon. An estimated 725,000 people were evacuated ahead of the storm, according to the national disaster management agency. Schools were closed, domestic flights canceled and nearly 8,000 sea travelers were stranded in ports. The tropical cyclone is expected to bring torrential rains and possible flooding.