Hundreds of Thousands Evacuated as Tropical Storm Hits China

by Alfonso Matthews Julio 10, 2016, 4:18

More than four lakh people were evacuated in China as typhoon Nepartak today lashed the country's eastern coast with powerful winds and heavy rains, disrupting air, rail and road traffic and prompting authorities to issue this year's first red alert.

In 2009, Typhoon Morakot cut a wide swathe of destruction through southern Taiwan, killing about 700 people and causing up to $3 billion of damage. In Taiwan, more than 15,000 people were moved from their homes which were prone to landslides or flooding and about 3,600 of them were in shelters.

NASA's Aqua and Terra satellites provided a visible and infrared view of Typhoon Nepartak before and during its movement over Taiwan. His body was found early Friday. "However, regardless of its intensity, heavy rainfall will continue to be a concern in Taiwan and southeast China, likely triggering areas of flooding into the weekend".

Li Wei-sen, Taiwan's Central Emergency Operations Center spokesman, said by phone that the typhoon was packing winds of up to 163 kmh (about 100 miles an hour).

The storm weakened as it passed over the island before leaving southwest Tainan City and was estimated to reach mainland China's Fujian province later on Friday. In the worst hit province, Hubei, 69 people were killed and 16 more reported missing.

Taiwanese residents had been bracing for the impact of the storm. Restaurant owner Chen Mang-ning said Thursday he had to put a lock on the rolling door of his establishment to protect the windows from strong wind.

At least 420,000 people in four cities including the capital Fuzhou have been urgently relocated, local media reported, while more than 300 high-speed trains, almost 400 flights, and nearly 5,000 buses have also been cancelled.

Nepartak is a Micronesian word for a local warrior.


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