14 dead in China as Typhoon Soudelor lashes coastal provinces
A typhoon that lashed Taiwan battered the mainland with heavy rain and winds on Sunday, leaving 14 people dead and four missing, levelling homes and cutting power to more than a million households.
Typhoon Soudelor made landfall in Fujian province late on Saturday and was downgraded into a tropical storm as it moved across the region.
The storm killed 12 people in eastern China and five were missing after parts of the country were hit by the heaviest rains in a century, state media reported. The casualties were reported in and around Wenzhou in Zhejiang, where downpours caused mudslides and several houses collapsed on Saturday night, Xinhua reported. The Fujian Civil Affairs Department said that the storm destroyed 530 houses and damaged 19,700 others. It said more than 10 million people in the province were affected, and 15,300 people needed emergency help. Economic losses to the province were estimated at 3.83 billion yuan (US$600m).
In Taiwan, where the typhoon slammed into the east coast on Saturday with 160km/h winds, the National Fire Agency said five people died, five were missing, and a further 185 were injured.
The dead or missing included an eight-year-old girl, her twin sister and their mother who were swept out to sea. A firefighter was also killed while another was injured after being hit by a drunk driver as they tried to move a fallen tree in the island’s south. Taiwan lifted its typhoon warning yesterday but the weather bureau warned of further heavy rains in the south.
The storm downed trees, traffic lights and power lines on the island, cutting electricity to more than four million households. More than 500 flights were cancelled or delayed. Three airports were closed and more than 530 flights cancelled, while more than 7,000 soldiers and police were on standby, provincial authorities said.