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September 30, 2009

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Typhoon brings gales, heavy rain to Hainan

TYPHOON Ketsana shaved China's southernmost island province of Hainan yesterday, heading westward to Vietnam.

The typhoon was only 260 kilometers away from Sanya City, Hainan, and had strong winds of up to 126 kilometers per hour at its eye yesterday morning, the meteorological station in south China's Guangdong Province said.

It said that Ketsana was moving westward at 15kph, and was poised for a landfall in Vietnam last night.

Due to the typhoon's effect, Guangdong and Hainan had received heavy rain and gales since Monday.

Meteorological stations in the area said the rain would continue until today, but the weather was expected to clear by tomorrow.

"The coming 'Golden Week' National Day holiday can expect fair weather, mainly cloudy, which will be suitable for outdoor fun," said Cai Qinbo, director of the Hainan meteorological station.

Sanya City, the most famous beach resort on the island, closed all scenic spots and forbade tourists from swimming in the sea on Monday.

The city government ordered all outdoor activities canceled and schools closed on Monday and yesterday.

Tourists at the Sanya beach saw tides as high as 2 meters.

The city's airport canceled 40 flights on Monday, leaving 1,220 passengers stranded.

Yesterday morning, 10 flights took off from the airport, as air traffic recovered.

The agricultural department in Hainan said Ketsana caused heavy losses, as many cash crops were damaged by strong winds.


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