China Braces as Storm Heads for Populous Southeast Coast

Posted August 30th, 2011 at 5:00 am (UTC-5)
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Authorities in southeastern China braced for Nanmadol's arrival late Tuesday after the tropical storm left a trail of destruction in Taiwan and the Philippines.

Chinese state media said more than 40,000 people had been organized into rescue teams in the city of Quanzhou on the Taiwan Strait. Tens of thousands of fishermen were ordered back to port in Fujian province, and a shipping line between Taiwan and the mainland was shut down.

Officials also canceled some flights and warned travelers that bullet trains in southeastern China may by ordered to slow down or halt their service altogether.

The storm has lost some of its power since ripping through Taiwan Monday but still carried winds up to 80 kilometers per hour and was expected to strike the coast with seas of up to 3.5 meters.

Nanmadol leveled hundreds of homes and caused widespread economic losses Monday as it passed through some of Taiwan's most heavily populated areas. One motorcyclist was killed by flying glass when a window broke as he was driving by.

In the Philippines, where the storm struck earlier with hurricane-force winds, officials raised the death toll to 22 after finding more bodies in isolated areas.