Beijing: Typhoon Nida, the strongest to have hit the Chinese coast in 33 years, today made a landfall in south China, packing winds of up to 151.2 kmph and causing major traffic disruptions and flight cancellations that left hundreds of people stranded.
The typhoon made landfall at 3:35 am at Dapeng Peninsula in the city of Shenzhen in south China's Guangdong as the provincial capital ordered suspension of work, production, and school classes and directed emergency and rescue personnel to be on alert.
The typhoon, which hit a number areas in China's Pearl River Delta, is moving northwest at 25 km per hour and expected to sweep across the cities of Shenzhen, Dongguan, Guangzhou, Foshan and Zhaoqing to neighboring Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, state-run Xinhua news agency quoted local officials as saying.
Nida has brought strong winds and rain to the eastern part of Guangdong Province and the Pearl River Delta region today, the provincial meteorological station said.
This is the strongest typhoon to directly hit the Pearl River Delta since 1983, He Guoqing, deputy director of the office of Guangdong provincial flood control headquarters said.
China yesterday issued the a red alert - the most severe level in China's weather warming system - for ocean waves and storm tides as Typhoon Nida approaches the mainland.
Companies and organisations that do not provide critical services or urban operations were encouraged to close for the day.
All ships scheduled to end their fishing ban yesterday were asked to delay their departure and remain at port.
Nearly 200 trains were suspended today, including 180 bullet train. Trains from Guangzhou to Nanning, capital of Guangxi, and Guiyang, capital of southwest China's Guizhou Province, were among those suspended.
Till the afternoon, as Nida weakened, flights at Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport started to resume.
However, as of 2 pm, 31 flights which are scheduled to depart from the airport had been delayed for more than one hour.
Sources with the airport said more flights delays were expected.
Flights at Shenzhen airport resumed at 1 pm while train services in Guangzhou and Shenzhen started to recover this afternoon.
All passenger ships across Qiongzhou Strait, between Hainan and Guangdong, resumed service at 1 pm, local maritime department said.
As of noon, no casualties had been reported in Guangdong, provincial flood control headquarters were quoted as saying.