China Evacuates SE Ahead of Typhoon

BEIJING (AP) -- Chinese authorities have evacuated tens of thousands of people, canceled scores of trains and flights and shuttered seaside resorts as a super-typhoon with wind gusts up to 200 kilometers per hour (125 mph) heads toward the southeastern coast.

China's national weather service said super Typhoon Chan-hom is expected to make landfall by early Saturday at Fujian or Zhejiang province, and has issued its highest-level alert.

Zhejiang's Civil Affairs Bureau said nearly 60,000 people were evacuated from coastal areas. The country's railway service said more than 100 trains between the region's cities are canceled through Sunday.

In the seaside city of Zhoushan, all flights in and out of its airport have been canceled. The city has halted bus services and speedboat ferry services. Several tourist spots also were closed. In the nearby port city of Ningbo, 23 flights were canceled, the airport said.

Several area cities also have announced suspension of inter-city bus services.

Chan-hom caused 20 injuries as it moved over islands in southern Japan, Kyodo news agency reported, citing the local government in Okinawa prefecture. The Japan Meteorological Agency warned of strong winds and high waves through the night.

The storm also dumped rain on northern Philippines and was expected to pass by Taiwan, where several flights were suspended. The stock market and public offices were closed Friday in Taipei, the island's capital, authorities announced.

Southern China already was struck by another typhoon earlier this week. Typhoon Linfa displaced 56,000 people in southern Guangdong province.

(KA)