Sunday, August 24, 2008

Typhoon Nuri Slams into South China

Meteorologists and state media have reported tropical storm Nuri has just slammed into China killing three people and forcing around 160,000 people along the southern coast to flee their homes.

According to China's National Meteorological Center, Nuri, which had been classed as a typhoon, until it slowed after ripping through Hong Kong, landed in the southern province of Guangdong at 10:10 pm (1410 GMT) Friday.

The Xinhua news agency reported that winds triggered by the storm has killed three people after a billboard crashed onto them on a road in Guangzhou, capital of Guangdong, earlier Friday. Moreover, AFP by phone has confirmed that on Saturday, heavy rains continued to lash southern China, two-government flood prevention officials in the area.

The China Daily said that the storm was packing winds of up to 90 kilometers per hour (55 miles), forcing more than 45,000 boats working in the South China Sea to be recalled and nearly 160,000 people to leave their homes. At least 20 people were injured and more than 40,000 trees were pulled down by the winds in the city of Shenzhen, in Guangdong. Moreover, the report added, Shenzhen's airport has suspended almost all of its flights.

Hong Kong issued its highest storm warning in five years Friday as Nuri brought hurricane-force winds and heavy rain, halting trade on the stock exchange and shutting down most of the city.

On Saturday, a Hong Kong government spokesperson said more than 100 people were injured in the storm, seven seriously. Moreover, another man was reported missing from a local beach. Yet, seven people were killed when Nuri slammed into the northern Philippines on Wednesday. Undoubtedly, torrential rain has influenced huge parts of southern and central China in recent months, taking a heavy toll in life and material damage.

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