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Tropical Storm Krosa hits east China, forcing evacuation of one million
8/10/2007 9:38

China has evacuated more than 1.41 million people from eastern provinces of Fujian and Zhejiang with no casualty reported after the powerful Typhoon Krosa landed the eastern coastal area yesterday afternoon.

In addition, around 75,000 vessels were recalled to harbor to avoid attack of Typhoon Krosa, the 16th this year, which landed at 3:30pm yesterday near the borders of Zhejiang's Cangnan County and Fujian's Fuding City and had weakened to a tropical storm at 5pm.

Fujian has allocated relief fund of 3.5 million yuan and it has also prepared 22,000 tents, 20,000 quilts, 150 tons of rice and 50,000 boxes of bottle water for people affected, according to the provincial civil affairs department.

Krosa was located at Fuding City of Fujian Province at 8pm, packing winds of about 100 km per hour at its eye, the Zhejiang Provincial Flood Prevention and Drought Relief Headquarters said.

It was moving northward at a speed of 20 km per hour to sweeping through Zhejiang Province before it reaching to the East China Sea, the headquarters said, adding 1.12 million people had been evacuated by 9pm yesterday.

Krosa unleashed gale force winds and torrential rains along the way it running through, making rivers swollen, pulling down houses, cutting off power supplies, halting highway traffic and air services.

In addition, schools, airports, expressways and shipping services in some areas have been shut down.

The tourism authorities in Zhejiang have closed almost all scenic spots along the coast, and evacuated more than 500,000 holiday-makers who had flocked to the seaside resorts for the week-long National Day holiday ending yesterday.

Also yesterday, rescuers were battling against strong winds and billows to tow a Hong Kong-registered cargo ship to harbor, which suffered mechanical failure after having been hit by Krosa off the coast of Zhejiang's Wenzhou City.

Twenty-seven crew members were aboard the ship, ALADDIN DREAM, including sailors from Russia, India and the Philippines, rescuers said.

However, residents in the tropical storm-hit area remain calm as the countermeasures taken by local governments have so far been proved to be effective.

At the Shacheng Town of Fujian Province, the most stricken place in the Super Typhoon Saomai, which claimed 483 lives in Chinese mainland last August, a hotel owner Mr. Yang said he was not so scared this time.

"We received warnings from government of typhoon five days ago and were required to stay at home," said Yang. "Officials came to see if we had been prepared almost twice a day."

Yang also seems not to worry about his fishery nearby, which he has invested more than 600,000 yuan to build up.

"The typhoon is not that strong as Saomai," he said. "What's more. I had the dam reinforced before Krosa came."

However, the governments of Fujian and Zhejiang have been warned of more strong rainstorms and landslides in the coming days.

The two provinces were stricken by torrential rains since Saturday and it was also forecast that the rain will last to Monday.

Fujian and Zhejiang have strengthened monitoring on the areas from landslide-prone areas and examining reservoir dams. Some reservoirs have began to discharge water yesterday morning.

Krosa has left four dead, two missing and 52 injured in Taiwan, in addition to cutting off power supplies and halting highway and air traffic, according to Taiwan media reports.