Tropical Depression brought torrential rains to large parts of the country yesterday, causing landslides and flooding that blocked roads in mountainous areas, the Central Weather Bureau (CWB) said.
A section of a 100m bridge in New Taipei City’s Chajiao Borough (插角) near Dongyanshan (東眼山) collapsed after several days of rain and flooding, trapping about 300 people in the borough, the New Taipei City Government said.
The bridge’s pillars had been reinforced with steel plates by the New Taipei City Maintenance Office, but continuous rain and recent earthquakes caused the collapse of a 5m section, the city government said.
The rain also caused landslides in Nantou County’s Renai Township (仁愛), cutting off transportation between Cueiluan (翠巒) and Rueiyan (瑞岩) villages, local authorities said, adding that a road between Wujie (武界) and Wanfeng (萬豐) villages had also been blocked by a landslide.
The Kaohsiung City Government said that it had ordered 2,035 people to evacuate from flood-prone mountainous areas, adding that a large section of the Minbaklu Bridge in Taoyuan District (桃源) had collapsed due to flooding, effectively cutting off the district.
The bridge was rebuilt in 2017 for more than NT$100 million (US$3.6 million at the current exchange rate) after the former structure was destroyed by Typhoon Morakot in 2009.
Photo courtesty of a member of the public via CNA
“That bridge is very important to the community, and visitors use it to reach the Yusui Hot Spring (玉穗溫泉),” a local resident said, adding that “minbaklu” means “hope” and “new life” in the Bunun language.
Pingtung County’s Wutai Township (霧台) recorded 693mm of rain between midnight Friday and 3:30pm yesterday, the highest accumulated rainfall in Taiwan, the CWB said.
The second-highest precipitation was recorded in Pingtung’s Majia Township (瑪家) with 648mm, followed by Kaohsiung’s Maolin District (茂林) with 542mm, the bureau said, adding that all three locations received more than 1m of rainfall over the past three days.
Photo: Tang Shih-ming, Taipei Times
Affected by flooding and landslides, 600 residents in Wutai and Majia had been evacuated, the CWB added.
The CWB said that its weather station on Alishan (阿里山) in Chiayi County at 12:40pm yesterday registered 422mm of rain during the previous 24 hours, while stations in Fencihu (奮起湖) and Lijia (里佳) townships reported 347mm and 302.5mm respectively.
The county also reported landslides, large rocks falling on roads, road collapses and sinkholes in 59 areas, the Chiayi County Government said.
Photo courtesy of a reader
Meanwhile, a rockslide, likely triggered by heavy rain, halted high-speed rail services between Miaoli County and Taichung.
Taiwan High Speed Rail Corp’s (THSRC, 台灣高鐵) sensors detected the rockslide in Miaoli at about 8am, the company said in a statement.
It later decided to suspend service in both directions, as it expected that debris on the tracks might pose risks, the firm said.
Photo courtesy of the armed forces via CNA
High-speed rail passengers departing from Taipei’s Nangang Station after noon and passengers departing from Kaohsiung’s Zuoying Station after 12:15pm had to take shuttle buses between Miaoli and Taichung, it said.
The railway operator did not provide a time frame for when service would be restored, but said that people can change or cancel their tickets without charge.
Lupit also forced the cancelation of flights and ferry services in Taiwan.
Photo: Wang Yi-sung, Taipei Times
The Maritime and Port Bureau said that 39 scheduled ferries on four routes had been canceled due to hazardous sea conditions.
Civil Aeronautics Administration data showed that 25 domestic flights had been canceled through 2pm, while another six were delayed.
The CWB said the heavy rains had been caused by a combination of seasonal southwesterly winds and a system comprised of the former Tropical Storm Lupit, the center of which made landfall in Hsinchu and Miaoli counties in the morning.
Photo: Lin Kuo-hsien, Taipei Times
The CWB said it expects the rains to ease slightly today, before gradually tapering off tomorrow and on Thursday.
Additional reporting by Peng Chien-li, Tung Chen-kuo Wang Shan-yan and Huang Hsu-lei
Photo: Weng Yu-huang, Taipei Times
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