BEIJING, July 25 (REUTERS, AFP): Chinese commercial hub Shanghai and neighbouring coastal regions cancelled all flights, slowed or suspended subway trains and shuttered businesses as Typhoon In-Fa made landfall on Sunday (July 25)
The typhoon landed in the Putuo district of the city of Zhoushan, a major port in the east coast province of Zhejiang, at 12.30pm local time on Sunday, state broadcaster
China Central Television (CCTV) said, citing the China Meteorological Administration.
The storm hit as central China is still reeling from record flooding that killed at least 58, cut off power and forced the relocation of more than one million people.
“We will make every effort to ensure the safety of people’s lives and property, and do everything to minimise disaster losses, and strive to achieve the goal of no deaths and few injuries and economic losses,” said Yuan Jiajun, Communist Party Secretary of Zhejiang province, during an inspection of preparations on Saturday, official media reported.
The Meteorological Administration earlier said the typhoon was moving at a speed of 15km per hour.
The wind speeds of Typhoon In-Fa, which means fireworks, were up to 38m per second, the Meteorological Administration said. That is equal to about 137 kph, according to Reuters calculations.
It was due to travel north along the Zhejiang coast from around noon, passing Shanghai and reaching northeastern Jiangsu province by the evening.
The Zhejiang emergency management department upgraded its typhoon response to the highest level on Saturday, closing schools and markets, and suspending road traffic when necessary.
Both Shanghai, home to about 26 million people, and Hangzhou to the south cancelled inbound and outbound flights from Saturday, and many train services in the region were also halted.
The Shanghai government said it would slow its subway trains, while Hangzhou authorities warned residents that underground trains would be suspended.
Shanghai Disneyland will close on Sunday and Monday because of the weather, the resort announced, while the city’s Yangshan Port has evacuated hundreds of vessels, the official Xinhua news agency reported.
Flooding in the central Chinese city of Zhengzhou in Henan province last week killed 12 people who were trapped in the subway system. Torrential downpours dumped a year's worth of rain in just three days in Henan, killing at least 58 people.
Millions of others have been affected by those floods, with some trapped without fresh food or water for days, and economic losses have run into the billions of dollars.
China has suffered an annual summer flooding and typhoon season for millennia, but the record rainfall this past week in Henan has prompted questions about how cities could be better prepared for freak weather events, which experts say are happening with increased frequency and intensity due to climate change.