Thousands evacuate eastern China amid typhoon Muifa arrival

Beijing, Sep 14 (EFE).- The Wednesday arrival of Typhoon Muifa on China’s east coast caused interruptions in air, sea and land transport and the evacuation of almost 720,000 people, local media reported.

The typhoon, which became a tropical storm Thursday more than 1,000 kilometers southeast of Japan’s Okinawa prefecture, is expected to make landfall at noon on Wednesday in Zhejiang province, causing strong winds and heavy rainfall.

Media from the province said 719,000 people had been evacuated in Zhejiang as of Wednesday morning.

The National Ocean Forecast Station, which issued a red alert, predicted waves of between six and 10 meters in the East China Sea between noon Wednesday and Thursday, The Paper newspaper reported.

The defense and emergency ministries asked the port cities of Zhoushan and Ningbo, home to one of the busiest ports in the world, to take precautions on the docks before the arrival of the storm.

The eastern city of Shanghai, which will see waves of up to six meters, suspended part of the operations in the port of Yangshan.

Forecasts said winds could reach a maximum force of Level 15 (between 166 kmph and 186 kmph) in some areas by Thursday.

Maritime authorities called on vessels that operate in those waters to be cautious and more than 11,000 fishing boats off the coast of Zhejiang had returned to the mainland Tuesday.

The typhoon is affecting air traffic in eastern China: some 589 flights – more than half of those planned – were canceled at the two Shanghai airports Wednesday and the Shanghai city airport. Ningbo suspended all flights scheduled for Wednesday.

The Hangzhou airport, capital of Zhejiang province, also registered numerous cancellations, according to specialized portals.

Railway connections have been altered after the cancellation of some of the services between the main cities in the east of the country such as Shanghai, Hangzhou, Nanjing, Hefei, Wenzhou or Jiaxing.

Educational authorities suspended classes in numerous locations. EFE


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