Super Typhoon Maria weakened to a medium-strength typhoon after its approach yesterday and all typhoon-related warnings are to be lifted today, the Central Weather Bureau said yesterday.
Maria’s outer edge made landfall yesterday at 5pm, with its center 310km off the coast of Yilan County, the bureau said, adding that contact with land had weakened it.
The storm would no longer pose any danger by about noon and the sea alert would be lifted by evening, the bureau said.
Photo: Wang Yi-sung, Taipei Times
New Taipei City, Taoyuan, Hsinchu City and County, Yilan County, Miaoli County and Lienchiang County have canceled work and classes for today.
Yilan County canceled work and classes after 3pm yesterday, with offices and schools in Taipei closing from 4pm due to the expectation of strong winds and heavy rain between yesterday evening and this morning.
Civil Aeronautics Administration statistics showed that 118 domestic flights were canceled by 6pm yesterday, while 181 cross-strait and international flights were canceled and 24 were delayed.
Seventy-two shipping services across the Taiwan Strait were canceled throughout the day yesterday, the Maritime and Ports Bureau said, adding that 144 shipping services are to be canceled today.
The high-speed rail system operated as scheduled yesterday and is to continue normal operations today, but the Taiwan Railways Administration adjusted schedules for express trains departing after 4pm on the west and east coast lines.
Taipei Rapid Transit Corp increased train services yesterday as some Taipei Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) stations were inundated with homebound passengers.
The Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport MRT Line stopped in-town check-in services at 3pm.
The express train services also closed early, with the last train departing from the Taipei Railway Station at 7pm.
The announcement to cancel work and classes yesterday was made at 10am, as Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) arrived at the city’s grade-one disaster emergency operation center at 9am to host an administrative meeting and monitor disaster prevention efforts.
During the meeting, Taipei Department of Personnel Director Cherng Been-ching (程本清) said the decision to close offices and schools after 4pm was made in coordination with New Taipei City and Keelung.
The wind speed expected between 1pm and 6pm yesterday did not exceed the standard for suspending work and school, but considering that national examinations were to end at about 3pm and winds were forecast to be strong at rush hour, the municipalities decided to suspend school and work at 4pm, Cherng said.
Garbage collection services in Taipei were suspended last night in consideration of the safety of residents and sanitary workers, Taipei Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Liou Ming-lone (劉銘龍) said, adding that the decision whether garbage collection is to be provided today would be announced at 11am.
BACK TO NORMAL? The move would be part of a gradual easing of curbs monitored by the CECC, which would retain the quarantine mandate if case numbers rise again The Cabinet yesterday approved a plan to next month reopen Taiwan’s borders to all visitors and lift the quarantine mandate for arrivals, provided the nation’s COVID-19 situation does not escalate. The changes are likely to take effect on Oct. 13 as part of a phased easing of border controls that is to start on Thursday next week when a negative polymerase chain reaction test result would no longer be needed, Cabinet spokesman Lo Ping-cheng (羅秉成) told a news conference. Arriving travelers would instead be given four rapid antigen home test kits, Lo said. The three-day quarantine requirement followed by four days of mandatory
‘NO SURRENDER’: A blockade or outlying island seizure would be an act of war, and China’s drills last month have emboldened Taipei in its response plans, an official said The Republic of China Army Command Headquarters has agreed to purchase 5,000 Kestrel close-range anti-armor missiles worth NT$400 million (US$12.63 million) from the Chungshan Institute of Science and Technology, according to the military’s latest arms purchase bid notice. The army asked the institute to complete the order within 13 months, a military source said on condition of anonymity. Kestrel missiles are designed to penetrate armored vehicles and are used in anti-surface warfare, as they feature optical sights and night vision, and can be operated in all weather conditions. The missile has a 400m range, or a 150m range when used for breaching brick
IF THE CHIPS ARE DOWN: The US secretary of state warned that a disruption to the supply of Taiwanese semiconductors would play havoc with the global economy If Taiwan were attacked, the global economy would face devastation, as that is where most of the world’s semiconductors are produced, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on Sunday. In an interview that aired on the 60 Minutes television program, Blinken was asked whether instability across the Taiwan Strait would be felt around the world. Blinken said that China has been increasingly aggressive against Taiwan, posing a threat to peace and stability in the region, while economically the world would feel the effects of such aggression. Blinken was interviewed for the program after meeting with Chinese Minister of Foreign Affairs Wang Yi
‘ABSURD’: UN Resolution 2758 expelled the Chiang Kai-Shek government without mentioning Taipei, something the Chinese minister did not acknowledge, Taipei said Taiwan yesterday criticized Chinese Minister of Foreign Affairs Wang Yi (王毅) for “intentionally misinterpreting” a 1971 UN resolution to misrepresent Taiwan’s status to the global community. In his address on Saturday to the UN General Assembly, Wang cited Resolution 2758 as a basis for Beijing’s claim that Taiwan is part of China. He said that Beijing considers Taiwan an “inseparable part of China’s territory since ancient times.” “Only when China is completely reunified can there be enduring peace across the Taiwan Strait... Any move to obstruct China’s reunification is bound to be crushed by the wheels of history,” Wang said. General Assembly Resolution 2758