The Strategist

Typhoon Mangkhut and Hurricane Florence: Exhausted, but still dangerous

09/17/2018 - 15:43

The strongest typhoon of this year, Mangkhut, formed in the Pacific Ocean and hit the countries of South-East Asia. The tropical storm caused the death of at least 69 people. And Hurricane Florence has already brought 17 victims in the east of the USA.

Typhoon Mangkhut and Hurricane Florence continue to synchronously destroy infrastructure of settlements in the countries of South-East Asia and the eastern states of the United States. Both storms have already been recognized as the most powerful in the current year. The total number of victims, according to recent reports, is 89 people, and dozens of people are missing.

According to meteorologists, Typhoon Mangkhut, which reached mainland China on Sunday evening and went further, weakened to a tropical storm. The wind speed inside the typhoon fell to 162 km/h, while it exceeded 200 km/h two days earlier. Preparing for storm, the Chinese authorities organized evacuation of 2.5 million residents of the provinces of Guangdong, Guangxi and Hainan. Airports are closed, all current flights are canceled at Guangzhou International Airport. Power transmission lines have been broken and several tens of thousands of residents in Guangdong have been left without electricity. More than 18,000 temporary shelters have been opened in the areas lying on the typhoon’s path.

At the end of last week, Mangkhut passed through the Philippines, Hong Kong, Macao, leaving a havoc behind. According to The Associated Press, number of victims amounted to 69 people, and 43 people are missing in the Philippines, where wind speed reached 205 km/h. Most Filipinos died as a result of landslides caused by heavy rainfall, and also because of fallen trees and collapsed structures and buildings.

The strongest blow struck on the settlements of the province of Benguet on the island of Luzon. Residents of one of the settlements tried to hide in a three-story building, but it was completely demolished by a landslide. Only three managed to escape from the rubble of the building.

According to the Hong Kong Observatory, Mangkhut is the most powerful of all the typhoons that have ravaged the area since 1979. All traffic was suspended in the special administrative area, the airport was closed and more than 900 flights were canceled, all schools were not working. In the city, high-rise buildings are damaged, with windows broken, the territory of coastal hotels flooded, trees and power transmission lines collapsed, and roofs ripped off many buildings.

The number of victims in Hong Kong is not reported, as well as in the special administrative region of Macao, where seven people were injured. All casinos are closed, which happened for the first time in their work, as well as thousands of stores, which is why supplies of food and essential goods is expected to be interrupted.

Force of Mangkhut was greater than that of Hurricane Florence, which has several times reached the 4th category on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale at the beginning of September, but gradually weakened to the level of a tropical storm and then turned into a tropical depression. According to meteorologists, Hurricane Florence has become the most dangerous hurricane in the east of the US over the past 30 years.

And even now, when the wind has weakened, it continues to pose a danger of large-scale floods caused by downpours. The states of South and North Carolina, where a total of 17 people were killed, have been particularly affected by the impact of the elements in recent days. In North Carolina, the water level in the rivers continues to rise: 60 cm of rain have fallen in the last two days, and the figure reached up to 86 cm in some places. The authorities warned of landslides. In the 120-thousandth town of Wilmington, which turned out to be cut off due to rivers leaving the banks, the authorities intend to deliver drinking water and food products through the air. More than 575,000 people were left without electricity throughout the state.

More than 20 thousand cases of power outages are registered In South Carolina, and there is no electricity in 170 thousand houses. And the state authorities cannot yet say with certainty how quickly it will be possible to fix the problem. More than 2,400 flights were canceled in the affected states. 


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