Powerful Typhoon Chan-hom battered the Chinese island city of Zhoushan on Saturday afternoon, bringing heavy rain and strong winds in an event that has seen hundreds of thousands of people evacuate their homes.
Chan-hom hit Zhoushan part of eastern China’s coastal Zhejiang province with winds of around 140 kph, the equivalent of a category 2 hurricane. No casualties were immediately reported from the storm, which has dropped 100 mm of rain in some areas since Friday.
Officials in Zhejiang evacuated more than 1 million people from coastal areas, called nearly 30,000 ships in to port and cancelled more than 600 flights because of the typhoon. The storm’s centre is forecast to stay in the East China Sea and weaken somewhat as it passes just east of Shanghai early Sunday, according to the U.S. Joint Typhoon Warning Centre.
Significant storm surges are possible in the coastal areas of Zhejiang, and Shanghai to the north.
To the southwest, residents of Guangdong province and Hong Kong were getting back to business after disruption brought by Tropical Storm Linfa.
The storm resulted in the closure late Thursday of Hong Kong International Airport, one of Asia’s key aviation hubs, upsetting the travel plans of thousands of passengers. But Linfa, which had made landfall Thursday in Guangdong as a typhoon, lost strength rapidly as it passed near Hong Kong. No deaths or serious injuries were reported in Hong Kong or Guangdong as a result of the weather system. By Friday morning, it had weakened into a lower pressure area, according to the Hong Kong Observatory. Earlier in the week, Linfa had brought heavy rainfall to the northern Philippines, including Manila, the capital.
A third storm, Nangka, was churning in the Pacific Ocean at the equivalent of a Category 2 hurricane, but it isn’t expected to hit any land over the next four days.