Biggest typhoon of 2016 to obliterate full moon for holiday
Updated: 2016-09-14 06:57
By Zheng Jinran(China Daily)
Travelers heading for southeastern coastal regions like Fujian and Guangdong provinces to celebrate the coming Mid-Autumn Festival may encounter stormy weather instead of a full moon this year.
The approaching Typhoon Meranti, the 14th of the year, has grown into the world's strongest typhoon of 2016. It is expected to make landfall on Thursday morning, the festival day, Xu Yinglong, chief forecaster at the Central Meteorological Observatory, said on Tuesday.
The storm will weaken as it moves northward but will affect Jiangxi province on Friday, he said, adding that another typhoon will immediately follow and is expected to make landfall soon.
Residents in China's vast eastern and southern provinces - Guangdong, Fujian, Zhejiang, Jiangsu - as well as Shanghai, will see torrential rains and strong wind gusts from Wednesday. The storm is expected to last for the whole three-day holiday, Thursday to Saturday, Xu said.
The risks of geological disasters triggered by downpours and winds will also climb in coming days, the national weather authority warned. It issued an orange alert, the second-highest level, on Tuesday.
In addition, the State Flood Control and Drought Relief Headquarters also issued its second-highest emergency warning for the approaching typhoon and sent seven teams to help ensure public security in areas expected to be hit.
Several tourist attractions in the affected regions, including Gulangyu Island and Wuyi Mountain in Fujian, may be engulfed by the wild storm during the holiday, said Hu Xiao, another observatory expert.
Visitors to affected regions are warned to stay away from swelling rivers that in ordinary years provide spectacular views - especially the Qiantang River, Hu said.
He added some flights would be delayed or canceled during the period, and visitors taking buses and vessels would be affected as well.
From July 1 until this week, China has seen the births of 16 typhoons, about 4 percent more than the seasonal average. In addition, more typhoons have made landfall in southern coastal regions.
Residents in many parts of the country will not see the full moon on Mid-Autumn Day because of cloudy weather.
But it's likely to be visible in the Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region and some areas in Hebei, Shandong and Henan provinces, experts said.
Xu Wei contributed to this story.
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