Taiwan shuttered offices and schools and canceled over 200 flights on Sunday as Typhoon Haikui bore down on the island.
(Bloomberg) — Taiwan shuttered offices and schools and canceled over 200 flights on Sunday as Typhoon Haikui bore down on the island.
Haikui is forecast to make landfall later in the day, which would make it the first tropical cyclone to score a direct hit on Taiwan in four years, according to the Taipei-based Central Weather Bureau. Typhoon Bailu struck in August 2019, though other storms have brushed the island since.
The eye of the storm is expected to touch down in eastern Taitung. Ahead of the typhoon’s approach, much of Taiwan was enveloped in heavy rain and wind.
“Various ministries of the central government are carrying out measures to guard against the typhoon,” President Tsai Ing-wen said in a post on Facebook Saturday. “As the path of the typhoon is still changing, I would also like to urge everyone to be on alert, be prepared for the typhoon, and to stay tuned to the latest information.”
Local authorities in eastern and southern Taiwan counties including Taitung, Kaohsiung and Pingtung ordered businesses and schools to close on Sunday as a precautionary measure.
As of 10 a.m. Sunday, 222 domestic flights and 37 cross-strait and international flights were canceled, according to Taiwan’s Civil Aeronautics Administration, while over a hundred domestic and cross-strait sailings were suspended. Roads in some parts of the island were also closed.
Haikui was located about 100 kilometers east of Taitung as of 11 a.m. Sunday, traveling west-northwest at a speed of 7 kilometers per hour.
After Taiwan, China’s southeastern seaboard is the next region at risk from Haikui, coming not long after Typhoon Saola plowed into Hong Kong on Friday.
Read More: Hong Kong Reopens With Flights Resuming After Typhoon Saola
The typhoons that ravage the western Pacific pose a potential threat to some of the world’s most cutting-edge manufacturers, such as Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. and ASE Technology Holding Co. Many Taiwan-based companies producing high-tech components are facing plunging orders from clients as demand for technology in the US and Europe dries up.
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