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August 4, 2011

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Home » Metro » Public Services

Storm alert as typhoon approaches

Typhoon Muifa is likely to cause serious storm conditions in Shanghai this weekend, the city's weather authority warned yesterday.

Shanghai Meteorological Bureau said Muifa had been upgraded to a super typhoon, the highest level, yesterday. At its core, winds were blowing at 198 kilometers per hour.

Bureau officials said the huge power of Muifa recalled 2005's Matsa, which was the strongest to hit the city in a decade, killing four people and causing economic losses of 100 million yuan (US$15.5 million).

Muifa could be just as destructive, said Zhang Ruiyi, a chief service officer.

Muifa was still more than 1,000 kilometers from the city yesterday, but it was moving northwest toward Zhejiang Province at a speed of 15kph, said the bureau. It is expected to enter the East China Sea tomorrow and hit the province in 72 hours. But Miufa's path was still hard to predict, Zhang said.

"There are still several different views about what path it will take," Zhang said. "Some predict it will land in southern Zhejiang, some say in northern Zhejiang, while others say it won't land in Zhejiang but move north along the coast. Each of the three paths would cause rain and windy conditions in the city with the second scenario having the strongest effect."

That would mean Muifa landing between Shanghai and Ningbo, Zhejiang Province, and moving north.

No matter which path Muifa takes, Shanghai is likely to experience severe showers and heavy gales throughout Saturday and Sunday, said Zhang, who was recommending that residents stay indoors.

Muifa is the first of two typhoons forecast to hit Shanghai this year, according to reports by the city's flood control headquarters.

Under the influence of Muifa's outer bands, thundershowers should be frequent over the next few days and Shanghai should be cooler, with the highest temperatures below 33 degrees.

Today and tomorrow are forecast to be cloudy with thundershowers in some parts of the city.

Shanghai experienced several thundershowers yesterday, which caused delays of up to an hour at the city's airports. Hongqiao was worst hit with nearly half of its flights in the afternoon delayed, according to officials. Four flights due to land at Hongqiao were diverted to Pudong International Airport.


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