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September 14, 2018

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HK prepares for strongest typhoon

HONG Kong is preparing for a super typhoon that is predicted to land this weekend and may be the strongest ever in the city since records began.

The upcoming Super Typhoon Mangkhut will be the second typhoon hitting Hong Kong this week. The Hong Kong Observatory issued typhoon signal No. 3 on Wednesday as winds strengthened with Tropical Storm Barijat.

All the warning signals related to Barijat were canceled early yesterday, but officials kept warning of a much greater threat from Mangkhut.

It is forecast to be more powerful than all the super typhoons Hong Kong has experienced in decades, including the notorious 1962 Super Typhoon Wanda that left heavy casualties, as well as Super Typhoon Hato that triggered the highest-level typhoon warning signal last year.

To review the city’s preparedness and contingency plan for the super typhoon, the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region government convened yesterday afternoon an inter-departmental meeting that involved 30 government bureaus, departments and organizations.

The meeting discussed issues on response plans of emergency, monitoring and coordination, preventive measures, information flow and public announcement, as well as logistic support.

The city’s Secretary for Security John Lee directed all emergency response departments to have their deployment and emergency response plans ready for the possible threats, and reminded that all departments should take timely precautions and maintain close liaison and coordination while the Security Bureau would closely monitor the situation.

The government said it will convene another inter-departmental meeting today to evaluate the latest situation.

In a letter to all public works contractors, the city’s Development Bureau called public works contractors to keep up vigilance to ensure the safety of construction sites and the public.

According to the Hong Kong Observatory, Mangkhut, with the maximum sustained wind near center at the speed of 240 kilometers per hour, will enter the South China Sea tomorrow. It is predicted to be closest to Hong Kong on Sunday and remain its intensity at the level of a super typhoon, bringing adverse weather to the city.

Several Hong Kong-based airlines have agreed to waive rebooking fees for passengers scheduled to travel on Sunday and Monday.


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