Taiwan, China brace for Typhoon Talim
TAIPEI/BEIJING: Taiwan issued a maritime warning and airlines cancelled some flights as the island braced for Typhoon Talim, which was expected to hit cities including the capital Taipei, before hurtling towards China, potentially as a super typhoon.
Talim was expected to gain in strength as it swept towards Taiwan's northern cities, including New Taipei, lashing them with strong winds and heavy rain, the nation's Central Weather Bureau said yesterday.
Its greatest impact would be felt today, the bureau said on its website, when it was expected to slam into the country's north and north-east.
China Airlines and EVA Air, Taiwan's two largest carriers, said they would cancel some inbound and outbound international flights.
A warning for sea traffic was also issued by the bureau.
Taiwan's second-biggest oil supplier, Formosa Petrochemical Corp, said it had prepared to close its supply port if needed.
Typhoons are a seasonal routine for Taiwan, but the island has enhanced its preparations and been on guard against the potential for severe and deadly typhoons since Typhoon Morakot, which killed nearly 700 people in 2009.
As early as tonight, Talim could make landfall along the northern coast of Zhejiang province on the Chinese mainland as a strong typhoon, China Meteorological Administration said in a statement yesterday.
Strong winds and rain are expected to buffet the coastal areas of Zhejiang and Fujian as well as the East China Sea and Taiwan Strait, the weather agency said.
Up to half a million people may need to be evacuated if the storm intensifies, according to Chinese media reports.
The storm is expected to turn towards Japan tomorrow. - REUTERS