Land warning issued for Tropical Storm Kong-Rey
The China Post News StaffTAIPEI, Taiwan -- The Central Weather Bureau (CWB) issued a land warning for Tropical Storm Kong-Rey (康芮) on Wednesday, and the Yilan and Hualien county governments announced cancellation of work and classes today.
August 29, 2013, 12:22 am TWN
The CWB issued a land warning for Tropical Storm Kong-Rey on Wednesday because of the threat posed to Eastern and Northeastern Taiwan.
Residents of Hualien and Yilan counties should be on heightened alert as Kong-Rey, the 15th storm of the 2013 Pacific typhoon season, could bring strong winds and heavy rains to the regions, the bureau said.
Kong-Rey gained strength Wednesday morning and the radius of the storm's maximum winds was also expanding steadily, the bureau said.
As of 11:30 a.m., the storm was centered some 210 kilometers southeast of Taiwan's southernmost tip, according to the bureau's latest bulletin on the storm's path.
Kong-Rey was moving in a northward direction at a speed of 15 km per hour and packing sustained winds of 90 kph, with gusts of up to 119 kph.
With the storm approaching, the Taitung County Government announced closure of all public offices and schools on the outlying island of Lanyu, also known as Orchid Island, beginning at Wednesday noon.
Rogue waves have appeared around Lanyu, home to the indigenous Tao people, since the early hours of Wednesday, the CWB report said.
Big waves were also seen in waters off Taiwan's southwestern and eastern coasts as well as around the Hengchun Peninsula and Green Island off Southeastern Taiwan, the report said.
The bureau forecast heavy rains to begin falling around Taiwan on Wednesday afternoon because of the interaction between the clouds on Kong-Rey's periphery and southwesterly winds.
Flights and Ferries Affected
As the storm also brought fierce winds, the government of Orchid Island, a popular scenic spot off the southeastern coast, decided to close schools and offices.
Flights and ferries to and from the small island were also suspended, the local government said.
Tropical Storm Trami hit Taiwan last week, forcing authorities to close offices and cancel nearly 200 international flights.
The military said Wednesday that it has opened an emergency center and mobilized thousands of servicemen to provide public assistance as Tropical Storm Kong-Rey bears down on Taiwan, posing a threat to eastern and northeastern areas of the country.
More than 40,000 servicemen are on standby to provide relief and rescue services, if necessary, the Ministry of National Defense said.
in a statement.
The military also has 616 generators, 456 water pumps, 83 inflatable boats, 56 helicopters and transport planes, and hundreds of other vehicles and equipment ready to provide rescue services, the ministry said.