Typhoon Mangkhut heading for China as Philippines death toll rises to 28

Aaron Brown
September 20, 2018

"Everyone is scared of the typhoon this time, very scared", a shop owner from a fishing village in Hong Kong said.

Environmental Secretary Roy Cimatu announced the ban during a news conference Monday in Benguet province, where 54 of the 65 typhoon deaths in the Philippines occurred.

The Philippines is routinely hit during the typhoon season but the strength of Manghukt evoked memories of the deadliest storm on national record - Super Typhoon Haiyan - which killed more than 7,000 in 2013.

The typhoon lashed the northern Philippines with maximum winds of 205km/h and gusts of up to 285km/h.

Tens of thousands of passengers were stranded in the city's worldwide airport on Sunday, the airport authority said, with airlines including the city's flagship carrier, Cathay Pacific, having already cancelled many flights.

This was reported by The Associated Press Sunday, September 16.

More than 2.4 million people had been evacuated in southern China's Guangdong province by Sunday evening to flee the typhoon, state media said.

The typhoon made landfall at Baggao, in the north-east of the Philippines, at about 01.40am yesterday.

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Philippine forecasters say Typhoon Mangkhut has slammed into the country's northeastern coast.

The storm has weakened from a typhoon to a low pressure area as it moves over southern China, according to the Hong Kong Observatory.

Flights over the weekend and into Monday were cancelled in Hong Kong and the mainland cities of Shenzhen, Haikou, Sanya, Guangzhou and Zhuhai.

Mangkhut has swept over Hong Kong and Macau and on into China's southeast province of Guangdong, after devastating the Philippines, where the toll is likely to surpass 50. But officials in Hong Kong are still warning residents to be cautious.

Authorities throughout those regions had been urged to dismantle structures vulnerable to heavy winds, strengthen port facilities and suspend large outdoor gatherings, the meteorological administration said.

"Mangkhut left more than 600 sections of road blocked by trees and other debris, and at the height of the storm, cranes toppled, scaffolding collapsed and skyscrapers swayed in the wind", NPR's Rob Schmitz reports from Hong Kong. At least seven bodies had been dug out Sunday before the work had ceased during the night. Men used pikes and shovels to dig into the mud since the soaked ground was unstable and limited the use of heavy equipment on site.

At that time, the center of the depression was around 200 kilometers (124 miles) from the Vietnam-China border with wind speeds of up to 60 kilometers per hour.

Other reports by Free-Prsite

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