Typhoon Haima, also known in the Philippines as Super Typhoon Lawin, scored a direct hit on Guangdong last Friday, disrupting travel, business and daily life. Scores of businesses and schools were closed throughout Guangdong, Hong Kong and the Pearl River Delta, with Hong Kong’s Observatory issuing a ‘T8 Northwest Gale or Storm Signal’ at 6:10am on Friday 21st October.
After devastating large parts of the Philippines as it made landfall over Penablanca in Cagayan the Super Typhoon rampages across Luzon and headed towards southern China and Hong Kong. It made landfall at around 12:40pm CST in Haifeng County, Shanwei, Guangdong, coming within around 110 kilometres of Hong Kong’s east coast, bringing heavy rain and gales of up to 70 kilometres per hour.
The Philippines’National Risk Reduction and Management Councilhave stated that seven people were killed as a result of the super typhoon and costs for the damage due to Haima may reach up to 26.16 million Pesos (US$542,000).
Unfortunately, it is quite common for such tropical storms to occur in the Pacific and move over towards the populous areas of the Philippines, Taiwan, Japan, Hong Kong and southern China, but it is unusual for such a large storm to occur so late in the year. It is the first time since 1995 that the Hong Kong Observatory have issued a ‘T8’ warning in October and the second typhoon to hit Hong Kong and Guangdong in a week – the first being Typhoon Sarika on Tuesday.
Hong Kong International Airport cancelled 742 flights on the Friday, with a large amount of passengers stranded at the airport without any information as to when they would leave Hong Kong.
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