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Nearly half a million evacuated as typhoon batters China

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BEIJING: Typhoon Doksuri hit southeastern China on Friday morning, bringing high winds and battering rains to coastal areas after the deadly storm bypassed Taiwan on its way from the Philippines.

Wind speeds of up to 175 kilometres per hour (110 miles per hour) were recorded as the storm reached the coast of Fujian province around 10:00 am (0200 GMT), Chinese state broadcaster CCTV said.

Fears of potential danger to residents and the destruction of property led the national weather observatory to renew the most severe “red alert” in its four-tier system on Friday.

State news agency Xinhua reported “more than 416,000 people in Fujian had been evacuated to safe places”.

In Xiamen, a major port city on the Taiwan Strait, heavy weather appeared to have ripped the roof off of a bus station and pushed it up against a nearby sign.

The powerful Typhoon Doksuri is expected to continue moving in a northwestern direction over central China as its intensity gradually weakens.

But Xinhua reported that the storm-level gales would affect “coastal regions of Taiwan, Fujian, Zhejiang and Guangdong, among others” until 8am on Saturday.

China’s National Meteor­o­logical Center on Friday also renewed an orange alert for rainstorms across broad swathes of the country, effective from Friday afternoon till Saturday afternoon.

Doksuri pounded the northern Philippines on Wednesday, toppling trees and power pylons, and causing widespread electricity cuts as well as landslides and floods. The death toll in the Philippines has risen to 13, with another 21 missing.

Published in Dawn, July 29th, 2023


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