2 killed, 17 missing as Typhoon Nepartak sweeps through China

The provincial flood control office said that so far 4.38 lakh residents in nine cities have been temporarily relocated. The typhoon has destroyed more than 1,000 houses.

PTI| Last Updated: Jul 10, 2016, 22:27 PM IST
2 killed, 17 missing as Typhoon Nepartak sweeps through China

Beijing: At least two persons were killed and 17 others listed missing after Typhoon Nepartak swept through east China today, leaving behind a trail of destruction as it thrashed the region with heavy rain and strong winds that uprooted trees and forced evacuation of over 4 lakh residents.

With that the death toll from heavy rain in the country in the past a few weeks have reached 166.

Nepartak, the first typhoon of the season, landed at 1:45 PM local time in Fujian province's Shishi City, packing winds of up to 100 kilometres per hour.

The provincial flood control office said that so far 4.38 lakh residents in nine cities have been temporarily relocated. The typhoon has destroyed more than 1,000 houses after it made the landfall yesterday.

Close to 400 flights were canceled, and more than 300 bullet trains were suspended, it said in a statement.

Five airports have been closed. Almost 5,000 buses have been cancelled and power supply has been interrupted in remote areas due to the typhoon.

More than 33,000 fishing boats were sheltered in port, while air-passenger services and ships to Taiwan across strait remained suspended.

Nearly 49,000 hectares of crops have been damaged, about 4,500 hectares of which were completely destroyed. Flooding inundated farmland, villages and even urban areas and damaged roads.

A 'Red' rainstorm alert was issued in Putian city, which experienced over 250 mm of precipitation in four hours today.

Heavy rain is forecast to continue in the province, and the above numbers were expected to rise, state-run Xinhua news agency reported.

Nepartak has faded into a tropical depression, but will continue to bring wind and rain to provinces including Jiangxi and Zhejiang.

Southern China has been battered by unusually heavy rain in recent months, triggering severe flooding, including in China's longest Yangtze river. Experts blame the change in weather pattern to the El Nino phenomenon which has resulted in intense rainfall in some areas.

China has pressed more than 32,300 armed policemen to battle floods in the last few days in different provinces. The soldiers have been evacuating stranded people, reinforcing dikes and dams, transporting relief supplies, and dredging rivers in provinces hit by the typhoon.

The armed police have rescued and evacuated 4,500 people, the report said.