Thousands of residents were evacuated as a powerful typhoon struck Taiwan, flooding the southern part of the island, crippling transport and shutting off power.
Typhoon Fanapi was the first major storm to strike the island this year. It later reached Fujian province in mainland China after crossing Taiwan with peak winds of 102 mph. Taiwan's Central Weather Bureau said as much as 44 inches of rain had been dumped in southern Taiwan by early on Monday- with more to come, The Press Association informs.
Fanapi made landfall at Gulei township of Zhangpu county at 7 a.m. (2300 GMT Sunday) and lashed coastal areas with winds of speed around 78 mph (126 kmph), officials said.
The storm is expected to move westwards at 12.5 mph (20 kmph) before weakening, said China's Met office Monday, while warning of heavy rains in the southern, eastern and central regions, including Jiangxi, Hunan and Zhejiang.
In eastern China, officials said, 186,000 persons were evacuated, and primary and middle schools as also kindergartens were closed as precaution, according to RTTNews.