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Most railway services restored following Saola

TAIPEI--Service on most railway lines around Taiwan has returned to normal after being suspended because of Typhoon Saola, a spokesman for the Taiwan Railways Administration said yesterday.

Traffic on a section of the North-Link Line between Suao in Yilan County and Hualien County in eastern Taiwan resumed earlier in the day, the spokesman said.

Train service on the line was suspended after the Nanao-Chongde section was badly damaged by landslides caused by the typhoon's heavy rains Thursday.

The first train to run after the repairs were completed set off at 1:20 p.m. on its way from Taipei to Hualien, the administration said.

The only section of Taiwan's railway still closed as of Friday afternoon was the Shuili-Checheng section of the Jiji Line in Nantou County, which was buried by a landslide during the storm.

Administration officials said the line was not expected to be cleared until late Friday.

Meanwhile, 39 flights at Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport had been canceled as of noon Friday and another 30 flights were delayed.

But the airport operator said the total number of flights to takeoff or land at the airport Friday would increase to around 610, from the 450 that the airport normally serves per day, to make up for schedule disruptions in the previous few days.

Typhoon Saola, downgraded to a tropical storm on Thursday, drenched parts of Taiwan with torrential rain earlier in the week before heading toward China on Friday.

The Central Weather Bureau removed its land warning for the storm on Friday morning.

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