China suspends trains as Alaska-sized Typhoon Chan-hom approaches

By Ella Wong, July 9, 2015

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With Typhoon Chan-hom continuing to pick up steam as it moves towards China, Shanghai’s railway authorities announced plans to suspend passenger trains running along China’s east coast on Friday and Saturday, reports Xinhua.

Typhoon Chan-hom forecast to hit East China

Chan-hom is forecast to make landfall near Wenzhou, Zhejiang province, on Friday or Saturday before possibly heading north towards Shanghai. Winds will likely die down as the tropical cyclone passes over land, but Shanghai is at risk of significant flooding because it’s so low lying.

Typhoon Chan-hom

Boasting a whopping cloud field larger than the state of Alaska, Typhoon Chan-hom is the largest of several major storms currently plaguing the Pacific region, with Typhoon Nangka predicted to strengthen into a super typhoon (equivalent to a Category 4 or 5 storm) as it makes its way across the Western Pacific towards Japan.

Typhoons Linfa, Chan-hom and Nangka
This satellite image of the Western Pacific shows from left to right, Typhoons Linfa, Chan-hom and Nangka.

Meanwhile, the erratic Typhoon Linfa, which was due to hit the southeastern province of Fujian Wednesday night, has made a sharp westward turn, veering straight for Guangdong province and Hong Kong. This morning the SAR closed kindergartens and raised a No. 3 Tropical Cyclone Warning Signal. Update at 4.30pm: The Hong Kong Observatory will raise the signal to No. 8 at 5pm and the airport authority has rescheduled 520 flights in and out of Hong Kong International Airport.

Tropical storm Linfa heads towards Hong Kong and Guangdong
Tropical storm Linfa's path, forecast by the Hong Kong Observatory. (HKO)

China's National Meteorological Center warned the typhoon will have a "serious impact" on south China. Yesterday, Fujian evacuated 10,000 people and suspended ferry services to Taiwan ahead of Linfa’s landfall, expected today, while 15 counties in Guangdong closed elementary and middle schools and thousands of fishing boats were recalled.

Fujian braces for Typhoons Chan-hom and Linfa
Fishing boats recalled to port in Fujian's Lianjiang County on Wednesday in preparation for Linfa.

Chan-hom and Linfa have already brought heavy rain and flooding to the Philippines.

Typhoon Linfa floods Philippines
Linfa flooded a coastal village in Malabon, Philippines, on Wednesday. (AP Photo/Aaron Favila)


[Images via Weather Channel, NOAA, SCMP, CRI, Indian Express]


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