Published: Tue, September 18, 2018
Research | By Jody Lindsey

Deadly Typhoon Weakens After Hitting Philippines, China

Deadly Typhoon Weakens After Hitting Philippines, China

Philippine authorities said a baby and a toddler were among the 29 dead, a lot of them in landslides in mountainous areas that left at least 13 missing.

At least 25 people have been killed in the Philippines in a trail of devastation left by Typhoon Mangkhut, mostly in landslides in mountainous areas, a presidential adviser said on Sunday.

The Hong Kong Observatory said Mangkhut was the most powerful storm to hit the city since 1979, packing winds of 121 miles per hour.

After formed in the east of the Philippines, the storm intensified into a super typhoon with maximum wind speeds of 250 kilometers per hour and sustained the strength for days before slamming into the northern Philippines on Saturday with violent winds and torrential rain. It was the most powerful typhoon to hit Hong Kong since 1979, packing winds of 195km/h.

Flights over the weekend and into Monday were canceled in Hong Kong and the mainland cities of Shenzhen, Haikou, Sanya, Guangzhou and Zhuhai.

The storm caused severe transportation disruptions, with almost 900 flights cancelled in Hong Kong on Sunday, stranding tens of thousands of passengers.

Mangkhut will weaken as it moves inland and could be downgraded to a tropical depression by Tuesday.

Itogon Mayor Victorio Palangdan told The Associated Press by phone that at the height of the typhoon's onslaught September 15 afternoon, dozens of people, mostly miners and their families, rushed into an old three-story building in the village of Ucab. In 2013, Typhoon Haiyan left more than 7,300 people dead or missing, flattened villages and displaced more than 5 million in the central Philippines. In the Philippines, where most of the deaths have occurred, a landslide caused by the storm is mainly to blame.

A powerful storm that is making its way across China has forced 2.5 million people out of their homes.

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Typhoon Mangkhut killed at least 28 people in the Philippines as it obliterated homes and crops and caused massive flooding, and is now on course to plough into China's coast.

Mangkhut is expected to be one for Hong Kong's record books.

Mangkhut, the largest storm so far this year, was downgraded to a yellow alert, the second lowest in a four-tier system.

In the neighboring gambling enclave of Macau, all 42 casinos shut down for the first time in its history.

Only three people have been rescued in Ucab of the 55 missing, six of them children.

Flights were rescheduled as airlines and airport authorities worked to clear the backlog of stranded passengers after some 900 flights were cancelled during the storm.

Emergency teams were sawing apart some of the biggest trees blocking roads and pathways across the city in a clean-up operation that is likely to take days. Buildings across the city were either boarded up or had their windows taped in order to mitigate the damage of broken glass.

"Economic losses in Hong Kong and across China could reach $50 billion on top of the $16 billion to $20 billion it probably exacted in the Philippines", Chuck Watson, a disaster modeler for Enki Research in the United States, told Bloomberg.

Mangkhut was still expected to bring heavy rain to Hong Kong, with flood warnings in place for low-lying areas.

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