Thu, September 02, 2010
China > Mainland > Typhoons, storms hit China

Guangdong prepares for storms' fury

2010-09-02 00:41:40 GMT2010-09-02 08:41:40 (Beijing Time)  China Daily

Clouds gather above Taiwan's Hualien city as tropical storm Lionrock approaches, September 1, 2010. [Photo/Xinhua]

CHAOZHOU, Guangdong - The tranquility in the air before tropical storm Lionrock's possible landing on Wednesday night here calmed no one in eastern Guangdong province.

Huang Shidong, 53, a villager of Jingzhou township in Chaozhou city, was among 30,000 local fishermen who docked their 1,500 boats for the approaching storm.

The eastern corner of the province, where 70 percent of the local income is derived from the fishing industry, is most likely to feel the first strike of the tropical storm, which on Tuesday joined forces with another tropical storm, Namtheun, as well as a typhoon, Kompasu, to threaten South and East China.

Chaozhou city authorities raised their warning for Lionrock to Level 2 on Wednesday, as local officials readied the city for any post-typhoon disaster efforts.

Huang, who has fished for 40 years, told China Daily that tropical low pressure systems like those in this current season are the "most evil monsters" for the fishermen working on the South China Sea.

"The power of typhoons in early autumn is terrible on the sea," Huang said. "It can be so strong that it easily devours boats."

The director of Chaozhou city's water affairs bureau, Zhang Muguang, said one of the biggest concerns for the city is a large amount of rainfall. He added that the typhoon that slammed into the region in 2006 wiped out one-eighth of its annual income.

"Floods and landslides are in the cards following big rains," said Zhang.

Local authorities on Wednesday said tropical storm Lionrock would bring heavy rains and strong gales to Southeast China's coastal areas, closely following tropical storm Namtheun, which hit East China's Fujian province on Tuesday night.

According to the Guangdong provincial observatory, tropical storm Lionrock had weakened but was moving quicker at 10 pm on Tuesday, heading toward the coastal cities of Guangdong and Fujian provinces.

Moving at a speed of 83 kilometers per hour, Lionrock is expected to make landfall in the area from Guangdong's Shanwei city to Fujian's Xiamen city, late Wednesday or early Thursday, and might strengthen before landing, said Lin Liangxun, forecaster of the observatory.

Lionrock will bring heavy rain to the area from Tuesday to Thursday.

Tropical storm Namtheun made landfall in Hui'an county in Fujian at 11:50 pm on Tuesday and was expected to weaken early Wednesday afternoon.

Meanwhile Typhoon Kompasu is approaching the west sea area of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea and is expected to travel at a speed of 25 to 30 kilometers per hour for the next 24 hours, Lin said.

Lionrock lashed Taiwan on Wednesday on its way to the Chinese mainland, bringing heavy rains and howling winds to areas battered by a deadly typhoon just over a year ago as a stronger front churned toward the Korean peninsula.

In Taiwan, authorities have cancelled classes, called off work and set up evacuation space for 19,000 people.

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