Typhoon Mangkhut, which previously devastated the Philippines, is now reaching China. Hong Kong was already devastated. The metropolis is in a state of emergency.
After typhoon "Mangkhut" in the Philippines has killed dozens of people, the first foothills of the storm have reached China. The National Weather Bureau issued the highest level of typhoon alert on Sunday, warning that "Mangkhut" may be the strongest typhoon hit on the Chinese coast this year.
In Hong Kong residents were on skyscrapers on Sunday staggering. Windows shattered and trees were uprooted. Flood flooded streets and squares. Many flights have been canceled. "Mangkhut" has a strength equivalent to the highest hurricane level in the Atlantic. He is stronger than "Florence", who moves across the eastern United States.
The hurricane should reach China's southern coast at the latest on Sunday evening with full force. Tens of thousands of people were taken to safety and ships were ordered back to the ports. The metropolis of Hong Kong was preparing for a complete shutdown and called the city's highest typhoon warning level. TV stations showed pictures of heavy rainfall that erupted over the city.
Hong Kong: China fears that "Mangkhut" could become the strongest storm of the year. (Source: Bobby Yip / Reuters)
Strongest storm of the year?
Hundreds of flights have been canceled, local traffic reduced and residents from low-lying areas brought to safety. The Weather Bureau warned of storm surges and floods that could cause even more devastation than last year's typhoon "Hato", for which Hong Kong had recently issued the highest warning level.
The city of Macao, known for its casinos and luxury hotels, also prepared for the typhoon. At least ten people were killed by "Hato" – the worst typhoon in 50 years. Authorities ordered the closure of the city's casinos on Saturday night. Meanwhile, in the Philippines, up to 100 deaths from the typhoon are feared.
Dozens of dead in the Philippines
A landslide in the Philippines has buried a barracks inhabited by miners, said the mayor of Itogon, Victorio Palangdan, a radio station. There were at least 40 people in the house. 32 other residents of his city were probably also killed.
Previously, the country's authorities had reported 29 dead. In Itogon in the north of the country only one of these victims had lived, explained Victorio Palangdan. Several people would still be missing, a government official said on Sunday. Accordingly, many of the victims are from the Cordillera region, including a family of six, whose house was buried in Baguio during a landslide.
Some of the victims resisted the evacuation order, said government adviser Francis Tolentino during a visit by President Rodrigo Duterte to Tuguegarao – one of the hardest-hit cities. "All the authorities have done their utmost to push the evacuations, but some regions are really remote." On Monday they will begin to restore the electricity and water supply.
Damage in Hong Kong: Typhoon "Mangkhut" now reaches China after the Philippines. (Source: Vincent Yu / AP / dpa)
Four million people without electricity
On Saturday morning, the typhoon was hit by heavy rains with full force in the north of the Philippines hit land, nearly 400 kilometers north of the capital Manila. He weakened slightly with wind speeds of 170 kilometers per hour. Gusts reached 285 kilometers per hour. The storm uprooted trees, destroyed houses and triggered numerous landslides.
More than four million people were without electricity, according to the authorities on Saturday. In total, at least 5.2 million people are said to be affected by the storm. The Red Cross of the Philippines is due to the destructive power of even up to ten million sufferers.
Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte wanted to get an impression of the disaster on Sunday. Mangkhut has been the strongest typhoon in the Philippines this year.
Demolitions in the Philippines: In Tuguegarao City, residents are walking on a desolate road. (Source: Aaron Favila / dpa)
"Mangkhut" more dangerous than "Florence"
The Philippines are hit by about 20 typhoons each year. One of the strongest typhoons of recent years was "Haiyan" in November 2013. At that time, more than 6,300 people died, more than four million lost their homes.
According to reinsurer Munich Re, "Mangkhut" is far more dangerous for the population than former hurricane "Florence" on the US East Coast. "Humanitarian" Mangkhut "is the more serious event," said Ernst Rauch, head of climate research at the world's largest reinsurer.