Typhoon brings worst rains in a century to S China

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Typhoon Fanapi, the 11th and strongest typhoon to hit China this year, has brought the heaviest rains in a century to the southern Guangdong Province, triggering landslides in some cities.

Fanapi, which landed in coastal Fujian Province, southeast China Monday, wreaked havoc in Fujian and Guangdong before it weakened into a low pressure system at 5 a.m. Tuesday.

The typhoon packed torrential rain in most parts of Guangdong Province in the 24 hours from 9 a.m. Monday to 9 a.m. Tuesday. The average precipitation topped 100 millimeters, the worst in 100 years, the provincial weather bureau said in a statement.

It said precipitation totaled 550 mm in 24 hours in the worst-hit Shuangyao Township in Yangchun City.

Heavy rain triggered floods and landslides in Maoming City, where more than 8,000 people were evacuated, although no deaths or injuries were reported.

The provincial flood control authority said several villages were deluged in Yangchun and Maoming cities. In Xinyi City, rain-triggered landslides destroyed two bridges and 10 homes.

"Heavy rain cut off traffic and communications in the three worst-hit cities of Gaozhou, Xinyi and Yangchun," said He Guoqing, deputy chief of the provincial flood control headquarters.

Thousands of people were believed to be stranded there, including students at a village school in Gaozhou, he said.

The flood control authority had sent three relief teams to the flood-hit areas. "We'll send helicopters once the weather permits," said He.

Rain continued to batter most parts of Guangdong Tuesday, and the weather bureau has forecast further downpours in the next 12 hours.

In Fujian Province, six counties reported more than 200 mm of rain in 23 hours after the typhoon made landfall Monday morning.

Rain continued in Xiamen, Zhangzhou, Quanzhou and Longyan cities Tuesday, the provincial weather bureau said.

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