Chinese state media report at least 121 passenger trains are suspending service in anticipation of the arrival of Typhoon Saola, while people in coastal areas of southern China were being warned to stay away from the coastline.The suspensions on key lines running from north to south as well as on regional networks will begin Thursday and continue through September 6, state broadcaster CCTV reported.
China’s National Meteorological Centre said Saola was moving toward the coast at a speed of about 15 kph (9 mph) and is due to make landfall Friday afternoon in the southern province of Guangzhou with sustained winds of 119 kph (74 mph) and gusts of up to 220 kph (137 mph).
The storm will then travel west down the coast into the Guangxi region before curving south out to sea between Saturday night and Sunday morning, gradually weakening as it goes. The weather centre has already issued a red alert for potentially destructive winds and possible flooding, with some areas expected to receive up to 200 millimetres (8 inches) of rain. Other typical safety precautions include recalling fishing boats to port and moving people who work on coastal fish and shrimp farms further inland, but no figures on evacuations were immediately released.
As the storm moved closer to Hong Kong, the city’s leader, John Lee, said in a Facebook post that he had requested various government departments to plan ahead and urged residents to take precautionary measures. Many students were due to begin their new school year on Friday, and it was unclear whether they would be able to do so.
The Hong Kong Observatory warned of squally showers,
Typhoon Saola Impact and Precautions in China
• At least 121 passenger trains are suspending service due to Typhoon Saola’s anticipated arrival in China.
• Coastal areas of southern China are warned to stay away from the coastline.
• Train suspensions on key lines and regional networks from Thursday to September 6.
• Typhoon Saola is expected to make landfall in Guangzhou on Friday afternoon.
• Expected sustained winds of 119 kph (74 mph) and gusts of up to 220 kph (137 mph).
• Storm will move west along the coast into Guangxi and then curve south out to sea.
Hong Kong Preparations
• Hong Kong’s leader, John Lee, urges government departments to plan ahead for the typhoon.
• Residents advised to take precautionary measures.
• Uncertainty about whether schools will reopen due to the storm.