Tropical storm Pakhar batters Macau and Hong Kong
Only four days after being hit by Typhoon Hato and yesterday reportedly saw Hong Kong and Macau cancel flights and ferry services due to the expected impact of the comparably weaker tropical storm Pakhar.
According to a report from The National newspaper, both cities instituted a level-eight warning in the early hours of Sunday but this notification was soon downgraded to a level-three alert as the storm eventually brushed passed before making landfall some 50 miles west of Macau near the southern Chinese city of Taishan.
Packing winds of up to 80 miles an hour, tropical storm Pakhar, which was named after a freshwater fish native to the lower Mekong River, reportedly brought large amounts of rain to the region and hampered official clean-up attempts in the wake of Typhoon Hato. Although no deaths were reported as a result of yesterday’s severe weather, hospital officials in Hong Kong told the newspaper that 62 people had been injured while at least eight residents of Macau had been slightly hurt.
The National reported that the run-up to tropical storm Pakhar’s arrival had seen Hong Kong International Airport cancel some 206 flights and delay a further 471. Officials from the Hong Kong Airport Authority purportedly moreover revealed that 44 additional flights had been diverted to other regional airports while the city’s flagship carrier, Cathay Pacific, declared that it expected “cancellations, diversions and severe delays”.
The newspaper reported that the imminent arrival of tropical storm Pakhar had also seen all ferry services in Hong Kong including those to Macau suspended until the alert level was lowered during the early-afternoon hours of August 27.
Reportedly the strongest storm to hit the region in 53 years, Typhoon Hato slammed into southern China on Wednesday with its high winds and torrential rainfall leading to the deaths of at least 18 people across the region. Although parts of Macau still remain without electricity or traffic lights, officials explained that the city’s water supply had been restored as of yesterday.