16 dead and billions in losses


  • AseanPlus News
  • Friday, 25 Aug 2017

The aftermath: (Left) A family walking through a flooded street in Dongguan, Guangdong province. (Above) A vehicle hanging precariously off a bridge in Macau, presumably blown there by strong winds. — Reuters

Macau: The death toll from Typhoon Hato has risen to at least 16 after the storm left a trail of destruction across southern China, blacking out Macau’s mega casinos and battering Hong Kong’s skyscrapers.

Eight died in the gambling hub of Macau, where local media showed cars underwater and people swimming along what are normally streets.

A man was killed by a wall that blew down, another fell from a fourth floor terrace and one was hit by a truck.

The Macau government said two bodies were found in a flooded carpark early yesterday, but details on the remaining victims were not immediately available.

Footage published on the website of Apple Daily showed water gushing into an underground carpark, with people wading through neck-deep water littered with debris as one man shouted in panic.

It was not clear if it was the same carpark where the bodies had been found.

Debris could be seen scattered on roads, with a shipping container washed up on its side on one street in front of a temple.

Residents holding plastic buckets were seen queueing for water from fire hydrants.

Ferry services between Macau and Hong Kong resumed yesterday morning but passengers said they experienced delays.

An abandoned vehicle hanging off precariously off a bridge in Macau. — Reuters.
A vehicle hanging precariously off a bridge in Macau, presumably blown there by strong winds. — Reuters

In Hong Kong, Hato – whose name is Japanese for “pigeon” – sparked the most severe Typhoon 10 warning, only the third time a storm of this power has pounded the financial hub in the past 20 years.

The city could have suffered losses of HK$8bil (RM4.3bil), Chinese University of Hong Kong economics professor Terence Chong said, referring to the value of its daily GDP.

More than 120 were injured as the city was lashed with hurricane winds and pounding rain. However, one 83-year-old man earlier thought to be a victim of the weather had committed suicide during the typhoon.

In the neighbouring southern Chinese province of Guangdong, at least eight people have died, state broadcaster CCTV reported, while around 27,000 were evacuated to temporary shelters, the official Xinhua News Agency said.

Nearly two million households were briefly without power.

CCTV said four of the mainland deaths occurred in Zhuhai, three in Zhongshan and one in Jiangmen.

In Zhuhai, which borders Macau, some 275 homes collapsed, with the typhoon causing an estimated 5.5 billion yuan (RM3.5bil) in damage, according to state-run Beijing News. — AFP

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