More carriers announce flight adjustments
More local airlines said Thursday they will reschedule some flights on Friday in anticipation of inclement weather brought by Typhoon Soudelor.
China Airlines said its flights CI308/CI309 between Taipei and Kaohsiung will be canceled.
Mandarin Airlines also said its flights AE280/ AE281 between Kaohsiung and Okinawa, and AE982 from Hong Kong to Kaohsiung will be canceled.
TransAsia Airways said it has canceled its flights GE362 from Macau to Kaohsiung, GE356 from Macau to Taoyuan and GE603 from Osakato Taoyuan.
It will also cancel domestic flights departing from Taipei Songshan after 1:30 p.m., including GE511, GE510, GE5111, GE5102, GE513, GE514, GE515, GE516, GE015 and GE016.
Its flights departing from Kaohsiung after 5 p.m. will be called off as well, including GE228, GE227, GE2282 and GE229.
The carrier said departure time of some of its flights will be delayed until Saturday—including flights GE327 from Zhangjiajie to Taoyaun at noon, and GE317 from Xuzhou, at 11:50 a.m.
Other delayed flights include GE335 from Shanghai to Taipei Songshan, to 1 p.m., GE303 from Shanghai to Taoyuan, at 12:20 p.m., and GE3605 from Tokyo Narita to Taoyuan, at 1:20 p.m.
Earlier in the day, EVA Airways and Uni Air also announced flight adjustments.
Military Ready to Provide
The military said Thursday that it has opened an emergency center and mobilized servicemen for disaster relief operations as Typhoon Soudelor nears and threatens to dump heavy rainfall around Taiwan beginning Friday.
The Central Weather Bureau issued a sea warning earlier Thursday and a land warning in the evening.
Amid the approaching storm, the Ministry of National Defense said in a statement that more than 32,000 servicemen have been placed on standby to provide any necessary relief and rescue assistance.
Two S-70C rescue helicopters, 6 UH-1H choppers, one C-130 transport plane, and two CH-47SD helicopters are also ready to be dispatched as needed, the ministry said.
It added that more than 2,200 military vehicles, 137 inflatable boats and 435 water pumps can be made available for rescues.
Soudelor is solid in structure and may continue growing and it could make landfall somewhere between Hualien and Taitung in eastern Taiwan Friday afternoon or evening, weather forecasters said.
On the storm’s current path, it could sweep across central Taiwan on Saturday before heading toward China, according to the weather bureau.