Typhoon Meranti: hits China but losing strength

Typhoon slams into China, but losing strength


BEIJING, Sept 15 (Reuters) – Typhoon Meranti slammed into southeastern China on Thursday, bringing strong winds and lashing rain and cutting power, but there were no immediate reports of casualties.


The storm, registered as a super typhoon before losing strength after sweeping southern Taiwan, made landfall in the early hours near the major city of Xiamen.


Pictures on state media showed flooded streets in some parts of the province of Fujian, where Xiamen is located, fallen trees and crushed cars.


Dozens of flights and train services have been cancelled, state television said, inconveniencing people at the start of the three-day Mid-Autumn Festival holiday.


Some rural areas had power supplies cut off, the report added.


Tens of thousands of people had already been evacuated as the storm approached and fishing boats called back to port.


More than half a million homes lost power across Taiwan on Wednesday and five people were injured as the typhoon hit the southern part of the island.


Meranti was a Category 5 typhoon, the strongest classification awarded by Tropical Storm Risk storm tracker, before it made landfall on the mainland and has since been downgraded to Category 2.


Typhoons are common at this time of year, picking up strength as they cross the warm waters of the Pacific and bringing fierce winds and rain when they hit land.


Meranti will continue to lose strength as it pushes inland and up towards China’s commercial capital of Shanghai, but will bring heavy rain.