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Thousands evacuated as storm strikes Taiwan
by Staff Writers
Taipei (AFP) June 20, 2012


Taiwanese authorities evacuated thousands of people, cancelled hundreds of flights and closed schools Wednesday as tropical storm Talim pounded Taiwan, officials said.

The storm sparked rainfall up to 50 centimetres (20 inches) in the south and forecasters from the Central Weather Bureau have warned that at least twice as much may yet be on the way.

"Even though it is not expected to landfall, the storm still may introduce heavy rains and inflict casualties and damage. The public must by no means relax their vigilance until Friday," a weatherman told AFP.

In the southern Kaohsiung city, which received much of the rainfall, schools and offices were closed. Nearby more than 2,000 villagers were evacuated from the mountainous areas prone to mudslides, with a further 3,500 evacuated island-wide.

A total of 247 domestic and three international flights were axed while all shipping services to and from the offshore islands were halted.

South-bound rail transportation linking Kaohsiung with the southeastern Taitung county was interrupted.

At 1000 GMT, the centre of the tropical storm was 190 kilometres (117.8 miles) west-southwest of the capital Taipei city.

With a radius of 150 kilometres (93 miles) and packing gusts up to 83 kilometres per hour, the storm was moving northeast at 41 kilometres per hour, the Central Weather Bureau said.

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SHAKE AND BLOW
One dead as powerful typhoon cuts across Japan
Tokyo (AFP) June 19, 2012
One man was killed as a powerful typhoon bringing heavy rain and strong winds cut across Japan's main island Honshu overnight Tuesday to Wednesday, the weather agency and national media said. Some fifty people were injured and over 400 flights were cancelled, while road and rail transport was badly affected. Authorities issued evacuation orders for more than 150,000 people in central, ea ... read more


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