Typhoon Mangkhut makes landfall, cutting power, travel in cities
Typhoon Mangkhut, dubbed the "king of storms" by Chinese meteorologists and twice the size of Hurricane Florence in the US, made landfall at around 5 pm in South China's Guangdong Province on Sunday, causing two deaths and over 200 injuries in China.
According to the China Meteorological Administration (CMA), Mangkhut, this year's 22nd typhoon, was measured with a maximum wind speed of 45 meters per second or 162 kilometers per hour when it slammed into Taishan, Guangdong.
Two deaths were reported in Guangdong, 15 injuries reported in Macao and at least 213 people were reported injured in Hong Kong after Mangkhut hit these regions, China Central Television reported on Sunday.
More than 2.45 million residents in Guangdong were relocated as of 5 pm on Sunday, the Xinhua News Agency reported on Sunday.
Schools will be closed Monday in Hong Kong, Guangdong and Hainan.
Obvious shaking could be felt inside buildings, Hong Kong resident Xue Juping told the Global Times on Sunday.
Water, electricity and internet services remain normal, Xue said.
Residents in Guangzhou, capital of Guangdong, told the Global Times on Sunday that the price of food and water have not risen due to the local government's emergency response system initiated days ahead of the storm.
Power was cut to 43,000 homes in Foshan, Guangdong two hours before the typhoon made landfall on Sunday, and 33,000 homes remain without electricity despite the company's attempts to restore electricity, China News Service reported on Sunday.
China General Nuclear Power Corporation's four nuclear power bases in southern China, which have 18 nuclear power units, are operating safely and have not been affected by the typhoon, the company said Sunday.
When Typhoon Mangkhut made landfall, the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge's power supply system operated normally, and monitors showed the bridge was safe despite being battered by winds reaching 55 meters per second, the Guangdong provincial meteorological administration said.
Typhoon Mangkhut is expected to impact central and southern parts of Guangdong, and Hong Kong and Macau with gales measuring between force 7 and 10, on a 17-point scale. The CMA has issued a red alert, the highest of four colored alerts, according to Jiang Jianying, chief analyst with the remote sensing service center under the National Satellite Meteorological Center.
Mangkhut is also expected to move northwest at 30 kilometers per hour and hit South China's Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region Sunday night, before being downgraded to tropical depression by early Tuesday as it approaches Southwest China's Yunnan Province, Jiang told the Global Times on Sunday.
There's good reason Typhoon Mangkhut has been labeled this year's king of storms. Its cloud cover is some 1,355 kilometers in diameter, almost twice the size of Hurricane Florence which hit the US on Friday, Han Xiuzhen, a meteorological expert with the CMA, told the Global Times on Sunday.
Government authorities in the areas affected in China have taken precautions ahead of the destructive storm's arrival.
More than 400 flights at two airports in South China's Hainan Province were canceled Sunday morning, with all coastal resorts and schools closed, Xinhua News Agency reported.
More than 200 flights to Guangdong, Hainan and other regions in southern China were canceled at the Beijing Capital International Airport on Sunday.
Also, on Saturday, fishing boats in coastal cities of Guangdong were called into harbor. Ferry services in the Qiongzhou Strait linking Guangdong and Hainan were suspended from Saturday morning.
Flights via Shenzhen airport were all canceled on Sunday until 8 am Monday. All long-distance bus services through the city were suspended from 6 pm Saturday.
The Macao government also announced on Saturday that it has shut down all casinos in the region, the first time in history.