Typhoon Utor kills 1 in south China

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Typhoon Utor tore through south China Wednesday, bringing high winds and torrential rains, as well as killing one person and leaving five others missing.

Disaster relief authorities in the city of Maoming in Guangdong Province said the casualties were the result of floods triggered by the typhoon.

More than 88,000 people were evacuated from the city before Utor hit on Wednesday.

In the cities of Zhanjiang and Wuchuan, several villages were flooded, as embankments along the swollen Quehua River were breached on Wednesday. Four hundred armed police are participating in rescue efforts

Utor was the strongest typhoon of the year before it crossed the Philippines earlier this week, killing at least seven people and leaving four missing.

The typhoon made landfall at 3:50 p.m. Wednesday near the city of Yangjiang in western Guangdong, packing winds of over 150 km per hour at its center, local meteorological authorities said.

It moved into the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region Wednesday night and is expected to linger there for about four days.

On Thursday, the railway bureau in Nanning, Guangxi’s capital, announced that sections of a railway linking the region to central China’s Hunan Province collapsed after being soaked by heavy rain.

Passenger services on the line were suspended on Wednesday but resumed gradually on Thursday following the completion of repairs.

The Guangxi water conservation department said major rivers in the province are flooding due to downpours brought by the typhoon.

About 245,000 people from three cities and seven counties in Guangxi have been affected by the downpours brought by Utor, according to regional civil affairs authorities.

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The storm has also forced 1,800 ships to return to harbor in south China, as well as led to the evacuation of 8,000 tourists on Weizhou Island.

Civil affairs authorities in Guangxi said 3,890 hectares of crops have been damaged and 176 houses have collapsed due to the storm, which has also caused direct economic losses of 34.53 million yuan (5.6 million U.S. dollars).

Xinhua

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