Schools and offices in Taitung, Hualien and Yilan counties will be closed this afternoon as the east coast prepares for Typhoon Nesat, which is forecast to cause severe rainfall today and tomorrow.
As of 6:15pm yesterday, Nesat’s eye was 440km southeast of Hualien County with a radius of 150km and moving northwest at 16kph.
As of 10pm yesterday, winds were gusting at 30 meters per second (m/s) with gusts of 38m/s.
Weather Forecast Center specialist Wu Wan-hua (伍婉華) said that a land alert had been issued for Kaohsiung and Tainan, as well as Hualien, Taitung (including Orchid Island and Green Island), Pingtung, Chiayi and Nantou counties.
A sea alert has been issued for ships in the Bashi Channel and the Taiwan Strait, as well as in waters near the nation’s southeast and northeast coasts, she said.
Nesat could slow down after it turns north, with the angle at which it turns determining rainfall in different areas, Wu said, adding that there is also a weak tropical depression in the South China Sea.
Photo: Chan Shih-hung, Taipei Times
“The tropical depression might merge with Nesat,” she said.
However, the bureau warned against underestimating possible damage from Nesat.
Accumulated rainfall in mountainous areas of Hualien and Taitung is expected to range from 600mm to 900mm, while the nation’s other mountainous areas could see accumulated rainfall from 150mm to 400mm, the bureau said.
The bureau projected that Nesat’s eye would make landfall between Hualien and Taitung at 8pm today and cross the Central Mountain Range before entering the Taiwan Strait tomorrow.
The agency forecast that its center would be near the southeast coast of China by 5pm tomorrow.
However, rain is forecast to continue in Taiwan until Friday next week.
Several organizations have canceled events or closed their facilities over the weekend due to the approaching storm.
The annual Ho-Hai-Yan Gongliao Rock Festival in New Taipei City’s Gongliao District (貢寮) has been postponed.
The Alishan Forest Railway has canceled train services on its main line, as well as on three branch lines and a cruise train tour. Alishan Forest Park has also closed.
The Taiwan International Balloon Festival has announced the cancelation of all events that were to take place over the weekend.
China Airlines (中華航空) has postponed a flight attendant recruiting event until Saturday next week.
Its subsidiary, Mandarin Airlines (華信航空), last night said that it would cancel all domestic flights to Hualien and Taitung today, as well as flights departing after 12pm to Kinmen and Magong (馬公) in Penghu County.
Flights between Taichung and Hong Kong have also been canceled, it added.
Uni Air (立榮航空) said that all flights today between Taipei and Taitung and between Taipei and Hualien would be canceled.
All flights leaving or returning to Taiwan after 12pm today have also been canceled, Uni Air said, adding that flights between Taipei and Matsu and from Kinmen to Taipei would depart earlier than scheduled, but did not have the schedule available as of press time last night.
Far Eastern Air Transport’s (遠東航空) flight from Magong to Taipei is to depart early at 12pm, the carrier said, adding that flights between Kinmen and Taipei after 1:30pm today have been canceled.
Other flights today with a departure time after 12pm would also be canceled, Far Eastern said, adding that a flight from Kaohsiung to Haikou (海口) would depart early at 1:20pm.
The Maritime Port Bureau said that 87 shipping services today would be canceled.
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