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Thursday July 25, 2024

Typhoon Saola lashes Taiwan with heavy rain, strong winds

Taiwan issues land and sea warnings with flights, ferry services to be cancelled for a number of offshore islands

By Web Desk
August 30, 2023
A man braves heavy showers and winds while inspecting his corn farm as Typhoon Saola brushes past Ilagan City, Isabela Province, north of Manila on August 27, 2023. — AFP
A man braves heavy showers and winds while inspecting his corn farm as Typhoon Saola brushes past Ilagan City, Isabela Province, north of Manila on August 27, 2023. — AFP

Typhoon Saola began approaching the southern coast of Taiwan on Wednesday after causing locals to flee their homes in the Philippines on Sunday and unleashed heavy rain and high winds that caused some transport delays.

Although it is unlikely that the island will be directly hit by the storm, Taiwan has issued land and sea warnings for it, which caused flights and ferry services to be cancelled for a number of offshore islands and the city of Taitung in the southeast.

The mountainous and sparsely populated areas of Pingtung County in the extreme south are predicted to see the heaviest rainfall.

Additionally, classes and employment have been put on hold in a few of these townships as well as throughout Taiwan's east coast as a precaution, Mint reported.

Typhoon Saola, passing through the Bashi Channel, is expected to approach Guangdong province and Hong Kong in southern China. China has taken precautionary measures, instructing fishing boats to return to ports along the south-eastern coast due to gale-force winds and gusts across the South China Sea.

In preparation for the approach of Typhoon Saola, the Philippines began evacuations and moved close to 25,000 people to safer areas.

At least 14 domestic flights have been cancelled due to the impending typhoon, and some schools in the Southeast Asian country have shuttered with lessons stopped on the opening day of the new school year.

According to the nation's disaster management office, Typhoon Saola's torrential rainfall increased the effects of the southwest monsoon and affected 64,000 people in 21 provinces.

The most recent bulletin from the state weather agency Pagasa, released at 2pm on Tuesday, revealed that the Philippines increased the third-highest wind signal over its northeastern islands, indicating the potential for heavy gusts and power outages, Bloomberg reported.