Tumbling down Taiwan trashed, China in firing line of ferocious typhoon
BEIJING: A typhoon was pounding southeast China yesterday, leaving moree than one million homes without power after lashing Taiwan, where it left six x people dead, four missingg and felled trees, traffic lightss and power lines.
Typhoon Soudelor hit thee city of Putian in Fujian province late on Saturday and was expected to move across the region, China’s Xinhua news agency reported.
The storm earlier caused d more than three millionn households in Taiwan to lose power, with streets strewn with fallen trees. All 279 domestic flights on the island were cancelled on Saturday, as well as at least 37 international flights. At least 101 people were injured in the storm.
An eight-year-old girl and her mother died when they were swept out to sea on the east coast, Taiwan’s official Central News Agency repor- ted. The girl’s twin sister remains missing.
Other casualties included a firefighter who was killed and another who was injured after being hit by a drunk driver as they tried to move a fallen tree.
The centre of the storm made landfall in eastern Tai- wan before daybreak on Saturday. By mid-morning, Soudelor was packing maximum sustained winds of 162km/h, Taiwan’s Central Weather Bureau said.
The typhoon weakened later that day while moving away from the island in a northwesterly direction.
Strong winds and heavy rain were expected to continue in Taiwan.
Authorities in southeast China evacuated about 163,000 people and ordered about 32,000 ships back to port ahead of the typhoon, Xinhua reported. More than 7000 soldiers and police were o on standby, provincial autho orities said.
The provincial capital of F Fuzhou was being battered by heavy rain and strong winds, and all flights to the c city were cancelled.
Heavy rain was forecast t throughout yesterday mornin ing in the northern part of Fujian, with more than 1.41 million households exp periencing blackouts.
The neighbouring provi ince of Jiangxi also issued a typhoon alert.
On Friday afternoon, marine police rescued 55 university students and teachers trapped on a small island, where they had been attending a summer camp, after gales stopped ferry services, Xinhua said.
The US Government was sending more aid to the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, which was battered by Soudelor last Sunday.