(Senior Storm Chaser)
Fri May 19 2006 03:22 AM
Re: Chanchu update


Officially: Chanchu has left HK without much incident except a couple of sign board damaged outside a gew shops. No one was injured.
Unofficially: Office workers were disappointed their working day was not called off, because the typhoon was not strong enough for the government to issue a level 3 (signal number 8) warning (on a four level scale - 1, 3 8 and 10). Alas!

Update on Chanchu:

Typhoon Chanchu kills 21 in China

By Christopher Bodeen in Shanghai (China) | Friday, 19 May , 2006, 08:29

A powerful typhoon pummelled southern China on Thursday, killing at least 21 people and leaving 27 Vietnamese fishermen missing after their boats sank in Chinese waters.

Chanchu, which was downgraded to a tropical storm, has killed more than 60 people in Asia, including 37 last weekend in the Philippines, where it destroyed thousands of homes.

China's official Xinhua News Agency said on Friday that 13 people died from flooding and landslides in the southeastern province of Fujian. Another eight perished in neighbouring Guangdong province.

By early Friday the dramatically weakened storm has moved into the East China Sea.

The storm hit the coast of China early on Thursday, flooding scores of homes and forcing the evacuation of more than 1 million people before weakening to a severe tropical storm.

The missing Vietnamese fishermen were on three boats that sank in Chinese waters, Vietnamese officials said on Thursday. Six other boats with 67 fishermen were able to reach an island and report the sinking of the other vessels. Vietnam asked Chinese authorities to help search for the missing.

Taiwan reported the deaths of two women swept away by floods in the southern region of Pingtung on Wednesday.

In southern Japan, high waves swept away three 17-year-old male students swimming off Hateruma island in the Okinawa chain, leaving one dead and another missing, coast guard spokesman Shoji Kawabata said. The third was rescued.

China said it had moved more than 1 million people to safety in Guangdong and Fujian provinces. The storm bypassed the financial centre of Hong Kong on the Guangdong coast.

Thousands of people evacuated from fishing boats and low-lying areas were staying with relatives, in tents, or in schools and government warehouses, said Zhang, an official of the Chaozhou city government in Guangdong.

Nearly 1,00,000 ships were ordered to return to harbour, Xinhua said.

T C Lee, an official with the Hong Kong Observatory, said Chanchu was the "most intense" typhoon to strike in the South China Sea in May, an early month in the annual cyclone season.

However, the early arrival of the year's first typhoon does not necessarily portend an unusually active storm season, Lee said by telephone.

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