Sunday, October 02, 2005

Deadly typhoon smashes into China

Typhoon Longwang slammed into the Chinese coast late Sunday after lashing the island of Taiwan, where it killed at least one person, smashed houses and cut electricity.
Authorities evacuated more than 300,000 people from low-lying areas of southeast China's Fujian province as the storm approached with winds of 119 kph (74 mph), according to local officials.
The storm touched down at 9:35 p.m. (1335 GMT), Fujian's weather bureau said. The winds were expected to slow as the storm churned inland, even as heavy rain pelted a broad swathe of the Chinese coast.Thousands of officials had fanned out to oversee storm preparations, forcing boats to return to harbor and clearing flood-prone villages, Fujian's anti-flood headquarters said on its Web site."We must ensure that not one person dies," it said.The typhoon battered Taiwan earlier Sunday. One man died after his house collapsed on him, and one woman was missing after being washed into a raging river, officials said.Another 46 people suffered minor injuries, and seven houses were destroyed, the island's Disaster Relief Center said.Officials in Taiwan said at least half a million homes suffered power blackouts, mostly in the city of Hualien, where the typhoon made landfall on the island.The powerful winds shattered windows and brought down the tiled roof of an ancient temple, TVBS Cable News reported...Longwang means "Dragon King" in Chinese.


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