The Central Weather Bureau (CWB) issued a land warning for Typhoon Nanmadol yesterday at 8:30pm and forecast that the typhoon will bring torrential rain and strong winds to parts of northern and eastern Taiwan.
Although the bureau said that Nanmadol had weakened to a “medium-strength” typhoon, it warned that it still posed a potential threat to Taiwan.
At 8:30pm, the center of Nanmadol was 300km off the southeastern coast of Oluanpi (鵝鑾鼻). The system was moving northwest towards Taiwan at a speed of 9kph, with a radius that had expanded to 180km.
It was packing maximum sustained winds of 162kph, with gusts of up to 198kph, the bureau said.
After issuing a sea warning yesterday morning for the Bashi channel, the CWB issued a similar alert in the afternoon for waters off southeastern Taiwan. Beaches and other scenic spots in Kenting were closed after the bureau issued the warning.
Travelers are advised to check with their airlines for information on whether their flights have been postponed or canceled because of the approaching typhoon.
According to the bureau, big waves were observed off the southern and southeastern coastlines as well as Green Island (綠島) and Orchid Island (蘭嶼).
High waves were also detected off Hualien. Hualien police set up a blockade along the coast to prevent people from approaching the shore to watch the high seas.
Affected by the system’s circumfluence, a torrential rain alert has been issued for the north and eastern Taiwan from yesterday to today, the bureau said, adding that the mountainous areas in southern Taiwan should also be aware of the possibility of heavy rain.
Residents are urged by the bureau to stay away from coastal areas, major rivers and tributaries, and people in mountainous areas should watch out for possible landslides and falling stones.
The Council of Agriculture’s Forestry Bureau urged people to avoid going to national forest recreation areas and on mountain trails, adding that these areas may be closed off at any time depending on the typhoon’s development. Information will be updated on its official Web site, http://recreation.forest.gov.tw, the forestry bureau said.
Meanwhile, the Central Emergency Operation Center announced yesterday that it was standing by to deal with any contingencies that may result from the approaching typhoon.
The emergency center also cautioned local authorities to prepare for preventive evacuations and to continue monitoring the development of the typhoon.
President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九), who has cancelled most public activities yesterday and today because of the approaching typhoon, called on the public yesterday on his Facebook page to be cautious about Typhoon Nanmadol.
Additional reporting by Mo Yan-chih