Authorities evacuated people from southern China and Vietnam on Monday as a powerful typhoon slammed into these countries, bringing daily life to a halt and canceling all air traffic.
The China Meteorological Administration said that “powerful winds, storm surges and torrential rain are expected along the southern coastline from Guangdong to Hainan provinces when Typhoon Talim makes landfall on Monday night.”
The agency issued an Orange Alert – the second-highest alert in the four-level color-coded system – saying the storm “is expected to intensify and become a severe hurricane.”
According to Vietnamese officials, they were preparing to evacuate about 30,000 people from the most affected areas in Quang Ninh and Hai Phong provinces since Monday afternoon.
“The storm could be one of the biggest to hit the Gulf of Tonkin in recent years,” Vietnam’s disaster response committee said in a statement.
Tourists have been advised to leave remote islands and airlines have rescheduled services to avoid the storm.
Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh instructed disaster response teams to prepare for “immediate rescue and relief operations” late on Sunday night, warning of possible flooding.
air operations canceled
At least 1,000 people were evacuated from the city of Yunfu in southern China’s Guangdong province, Southern Daily reported.
The city’s weather agency said at around 2:00 pm (0600 GMT), Typhoon Talim was 280 kilometers southwest of Hong Kong.
Trading in Hong Kong’s $5.2 trillion stock market was canceled on Monday as the Asian financial hub ground to a halt.
The Hong Kong Observatory warned of possible flooding in low-lying areas due to the storm, and ferry and most bus services in the city were suspended.
“More than 1,000 passengers were affected by flight cancellations and delays,” the Hong Kong Airport Authority said.
Authorities on south China’s Hainan Island asked ships in nearby waters to return to port after a local marine forecast station warned of waves of up to six meters (20 feet), according to the news agency. Xinhua informed of.
Ferry services between Hainan and neighboring Guangdong province were suspended on Sunday morning.
State media reported that Milan International Airport and Kionghai Boao Airport on Hainan Island had canceled all flights.
Local media said Zhuhai Jinwan Airport in Guangdong near Macau canceled more than 80 flights.
Scientists have warned that as the world warms with climate change, typhoons are becoming more powerful.