Mon, Aug 27, 2018 - Page 1 News List

More rain forecast for center and south

FLOOD WOES:The Central Emergency Operation Center said that water levels have begun to recede, but losses in the agricultural sector were about NT$563.11 million

By Shelley Shan  /  Staff reporter

Members of the Army Chemical Corps take part in an inspection and sterilization mission of flooded areas in Tainan’s Yanshuei District yesterday.

Photo: Wang Han-ping, Taipei Times

With the center and south of the nation still reeling from a tropical depression system that has hovered above Taiwan since Thursday, the combination of a monsoon trough and the southwest airstream is expected to bring more rain this week.

As of noon yesterday, the death toll from the flooding stood at seven, with 116 people injured and 599 people in shelters, statistics from the Central Emergency Operation Center showed.

Agricultural losses caused by the flooding are estimated to have reached at least NT$563.11 million (US$18.35 million) as of 5pm, while repairing damage to schools and other buildings is expected to cost NT$157 million, the center said.

From today to Wednesday, chances of showers or thundershowers would be high in the nation’s center, south and southeast, the Central Weather Bureau said, adding that torrential to extremely torrential rainfall is likely.

The rest of the nation could also expect showers or thundershowers, with the possibility of heavy rainfall, it said.

The weather would remain unstable for the next few days, the bureau said, adding that people should be alert for landslides and quickly rising river levels, especially in low-lying areas.

Due to the southwest airstream, coastal areas nationwide could see strong winds measuring level 8 to level 10 on the Beaufort scale, it said.

The extended forecast predicts rain will ease nationwide on Thursday and Friday, when a Pacific high-pressure system is expected to strengthen and the southwest airstream to weaken slightly, the bureau said.

However, chances of showers or thundershowers would remain high nationwide, it said.

Former bureau Weather Forecast Center director Daniel Wu (吳德榮) said in his online blog that the tropical depression system that hovered above the nation last week arrived in China’s Hangzhou Bay yesterday, while the front end of the southwest airstream moved to the south of the Taiwan Strait and the Bashi Channel, which led to the increase of rain in Taitung and Pigtung counties.

Earlier in the day, the emergency center said that water levels were receding in the 1,222 flooded areas, with the exception of nine areas in Chiayi County and one in Tainan, where floodwaters were expected to drop later yesterday.

During a visit to the emergency center, Premier William Lai (賴清德) said the authorities and the public should begin disinfecting and sterilizing affected areas to prevent contagious diseases, and that farm animals that died in the flooding should be incinerated if necessary.

Lai gave the instruction after he was briefed by the Council of Agriculture on the number of farm animals that died in flooding in central and southern Taiwan.

About 1.4 million chickens, 500,000 ducks, 200,000 geese and 7,000 pigs reportedly died in the flooding, emergency center statistics showed as of noon.

The council should know the number of farms where livestock was affected, Lai said, adding that it should assist the Ministry of National Defense in removing the carcasses.

The council should replicate its experience with avian flu by placing the carcasses in sealed bags before sending them to incinerators, Lai said.

As dengue fever cases have been reported in Taichung, Taipei and New Taipei City, government agencies should disinfect areas affected by the floods to prevent the mosquito-borne disease from spreading, Lai said.

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