Shanghai cancels flights as Typhoon In-Fa lashes eastern China

Two international airports in the Chinese city of Shanghai have cancelled all flights and authorities banned outdoor activities as Typhoon In-Fa lashed eastern China with high winds and heavy rains.

In-Fa landed in the Putuo district of the city of Zhoushan, a major port in the eastern province of Zhejiang, at 12:30pm (04:30 GMT) on Sunday, state broadcaster CCTV said, citing the China Meteorological Administration.

The storm hit as central China is still reeling from record flooding that killed at least 58, cut off power and forced the relocation of more than 1 million people.

“We will make every effort to ensure the safety of people’s lives and property, and do everything to minimise disaster losses, and strive to achieve the goal of no deaths and few injuries and economic losses,” said Yuan Jiajun, Zhejiang province Communist Party secretary, during an inspection of preparations on Saturday, official media reported.

The typhoon earlier dumped rain on Taiwan and knocked down tree branches but no deaths or injuries were reported. It was packing sustained winds of 155km (95 miles) per hour with gusts up to 191km/h (120 mph).

Hundreds of flights at Shanghai Pudong and Shanghai Hongqiao airports were cancelled and more cancellations are expected on Monday, state TV reported on its website.

The international airport in Hangzhou, southwest of Shanghai, also cancelled flights.

The Shanghai government closed parks and the riverfront Bund district, a popular tourist area, and said it would slow its subway trains. Authorities in Hangzhou also warned residents that underground trains would be suspended.

Train service to Ningbo, a port city south of Shanghai, was also suspended, according to state TV. The Zhoushan Bridge that connects islands near Ningbo was closed. Schools, markets and businesses in Zhejiang province were ordered earlier to close.

On Saturday, large container ships were moved from Yangshan Port in Shanghai, one of the world’s busiest shipping centres. State TV said a ship lock in Nantong, which abuts Shanghai to the north, stopped releasing vessels into the Yangtze River.

Meanwhile, in central China, the death toll rose to 58 after record rains hit the major city of Zhengzhou on Tuesday, state TV reported.

The rains flooded a Zhengzhou subway tunnel where at least 12 people died, knocked out power to a hospital and other buildings and left streets filled with mud.

Rescuers used bulldozers and rubber boats to evacuate residents of areas that still were underwater, according to the Shanghai news outlet The Paper.

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