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July 26, 2021

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City, coastal regions hit by typhoon

Shanghai and neighboring coastal regions canceled all flights, suspended subway trains and shuttered businesses as Typhoon In-Fa made landfall yesterday.

In-Fa landed in the Putuo District of Zhoushan City, which is a major port in the eastern province of Zhejiang, at 12:30pm yesterday, according to the China Meteorological Administration.

The typhoon, the sixth of this year, is forecast to make landfall again between the coastal regions of Haiyan in Zhejiang and Jinshan District in Shanghai, late last night and early today, according to the Shanghai meteorological bureau. It is expected to linger in east China and pound Zhejiang, Jiangsu and Anhui provinces, and Shanghai, with rainstorms.

“Typhoon In-Fa is similar to Typhoon Gloria in 1949, in terms of its movement and landing path,” said Li Yongping, chief engineer of Shanghai Typhoon Research Institute of China Meteorological Administration. “The heavy rains and strong winds are expected to last until Tuesday.”

The eye of In-Fa was about 100 kilometers southeast of Shanghai at 4pm yesterday, packing winds up to 136.8 kilometers per hour. It will move northwest at a speed of about 10 to 15kph, according to the bureau.

“We are currently not going to issue the red typhoon alert (the highest level of the four-tier system),” said Wu Rui, one of the chief weather service officers of the bureau.

Shanghai is expected to be hit by downpours with precipitation of up to 250 to 350 millimeters until tomorrow. The temperature is expected to range between 25 and 28 degrees Celsius.

The districts of Baoshan, Chongming, and Minhang as well as the Pudong New Area recorded wind force of up to level 12, 134kph, strong enough to uproot a tree.

From 8am to 4pm yesterday, 87.9 percent of subdistricts and towns in the city received precipitation reaching 25mm. Among them, 16.7 percent of the subdistricts and towns received rainfall exceeding 50mm.

The alert warning for high tide on the Huangpu River was upgraded to red, and the popular Bund riverfront was closed. Residents were advised to reduce outside activities and stay alert.

About 360,000 people in Shanghai have been evacuated, and more than 1,700 vessels have returned to ports, the city’s flood control headquarters said. More than 2,000 rescue teams in the city are on stand-by. There were no reports of casualties yesterday, Shanghai police said.

Police received more than 4,900 calls from 8am to 4pm yesterday, mainly relating to fallen trees or objects falling from high places. Most of them occurred in suburban districts, police said.

The balcony of a fourth-floor apartment in the Pudong New Area came off yesterday, but no one was injured, local news portal has reported.

The incident happened in a residential complex in Zhoupu Town at 8:30am. The entire balcony was blown away along with the windows, exposing the bedroom.

The owners of the apartment had knocked off a part of the load-bearing wall at the balcony, the news portal reported.

Jinshan District has upgraded the emergency response level to the highest. Authorities have asked all educational institutions, companies and factories to suspend operations.

From 8pm on Friday to 5pm yesterday, Jinshan had received precipitation from 103.2mm to 194.5mm, with the highest rainfall recorded at Jinshui Lake.

According to the district’s flood prevention office, several areas are expected to see water levels reach a historical high early today. In particular, water levels in Jinshanzui may reach 6.65m high, exceeding the warning level of 5.4 meters, and likely beating the previous record of 6.57m.

So far, the district has evacuated more than 280,000 people to safety. It has 279 temporary shelters which can accommodate more than 37,000 people.

The typhoon started to wreak havoc in Zhejiang on Saturday, bringing heavy downpours, strong gales and floods. More than 6km of roads in Zhoushan have been inundated by seawater.

“We will make every effort to ensure the safety of people’s lives and property, and do everything to minimize disaster losses, and strive to achieve the goal of no deaths and few injuries and economic losses,” said Yuan Jiajun, the Zhejiang Province Party secretary on Saturday.

The Zhejiang provincial flood control headquarters upgraded its emergency response to the highest level on Saturday afternoon, closing schools and markets, and suspending road traffic. By noon yesterday, about 17,000 fishing vessels had returned to ports for shelter, and over 1.5 million people across the province had been evacuated to safe places.

Zhejiang has opened more than 12,000 temporary shelter facilities to the public.

Both Shanghai, home to about 26 million people, and Hangzhou to the south, canceled yesterday’s flights.

All high-speed trains departing from and arriving at Shanghai’s railway stations scheduled between 7pm yesterday and noon today were canceled, according to railway authorities. China Railway Shanghai Group said they are closely following the development of the typhoon to make flexible arrangements depending on weather conditions.

The Shanghai Metro announced the suspension of services on several lines yesterday. As of 1:30pm, a total of five Metro lines — Lines 3, 5, 16, 17 and the Pujiang Line — and the Maglev Line, suspended operations.

Nearly 130 tourists spots, including the Shanghai Disneyland, the Oriental Pearl Tower, were closed for safety reasons.

All summer daycare classes and training classes for students are suspended. Water tours on the Huangpu River and Suzhou Creek are called to a halt.


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