Super typhoon Nepartak: already in Taiwan, China is next

Super typhoon Nepartak: already in Taiwan, China is nextSuper typhoon Nepartak hit eastern Taiwan early on Friday, driving thousands of people from their homes, disrupting power supply and forcing the cancellation of more than 500 flights.

Television broadcast images of strong wind and torrential rains brought by the year's first typhoon, whose approach had prompted Taiwan and neighboring China to batten down the hatches.

As many as 15,400 people were evacuated from their homes in preparation for the storm, while 187,830 households suffered power outages, emergency officials said.

One death and 66 injuries were reported. Bullet train service had been suspended, and more than 300 international and 254 domestic flights canceled.

Tropical Storm Risk had rated the typhoon as category 5, at the top of its ranking, but it is now weakening and should be a tropical storm by the time it hits China's southeastern province of Fujian on Saturday morning.

More than 4,000 people working on coastal fish farms in Fujian have already been evacuated, and fishing boats recalled to port.

The storm is expected to worsen already severe flooding in parts of central and eastern China, especially in the major city of Wuhan.

Typhoons used to kill many people in China but the government now enforces evacuations and takes precautions well in advance, which has helped save many lives.

Source: Reuters
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