Strongest October Typhoon Hits China, Brings Gales and Rain

  • Super typhoon makes landfall in Guangdong just after 2 p.m.
  • Air and sea traffic, maritime attractions disrupted by storm

Typhoon Mujigae, the strongest October storm to hit the Chinese mainland since 1949, made landfall in southern China on Sunday afternoon.

Bringing gales and a downpour, the typhoon hit Zhanjiang city in the coastal province of Guangdong at 2:10 p.m., packing winds of about 180 kilometers per hour (112 miles per hour), Xinhua reported, citing the provincial meteorological observatory. As much as 248 millimeters (9.8 inches) of rain had fallen in some areas by 2 p.m.

The storm will weaken as it heads in a northwesterly direction toward the Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region, the China Meteorological Administration said in a press release.

Also Sunday, a tornado swept four townships in Guangdong on Sunday afternoon, killing three people and injuring 80, the Southern Metropolis Daily reported, citing local authorities.

Typhoon Mujigae hit amid China’s Golden Week holiday, which runs Oct. 1-Oct. 7. More than 100 flights were delayed or canceled in coastal cities.

Air and sea traffic between Guangdong and the island of Hainan was disrupted by the typhoon, and ferry services were suspended, according to the China News Service. Thousands of people were stranded.

The typhoon cut water and electricity supplies in many areas in Zhanjiang. Maritime attractions were halted in southern Chinese coastal regions after authorities upgraded the alert for the super typhoon to orange, Xinhua said Saturday.

About 500 tourists were stranded since Saturday on an island in Maoming city in Guangdong province, according to the Xinhua report. No casualties were reported.

In Hong Kong, the Strong Wind Signal No. 3 could be lowered later Sunday evening, the observatory said in a statement.

— With assistance by Haixing Jin, Keith Zhai, Jonathan Browning, and Janet Ong

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