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One dead, several injured in northern Taiwan amid torrential rain

TAIPEI, Taiwan — One woman was confirmed dead, five others injured and two remained missing in northern Taiwan as of Friday, amid severe flooding caused by torrential rain around the country, government statistics showed.

As of 2 p.m., a woman was confirmed dead after being swept into an drainage ditch while riding a scooter in the Bali District of New Taipei. She showed no vital signs before being rushed to hospital and pronounced dead on arrival, the National Fire Agency said.

In Keelung, a young girl was resuscitated at a hospital after rescuers found her with waterlogged lungs and no signs of life near a bus shelter.

Severe flooding in parts of Keelung extinguished car engines and sent pedestrians scrambling to the top of their cars on Friday.

Six people became stranded at a bus shelter on Jijing 1st Rd. (基金一路), and three were able to climb up to safety at the roof of the structure.

The others — an elderly couple and their granddaughter — were unable to escape the rising floodwater and were washed away.

The girl showed no signs of life when police and rescuers arrived at the scene, but was resuscitated during emergency treatment at a branch of Chang Gung Memorial Hospital.

The hospital reported Friday afternoon that the girl, surnamed Lin, had regained consciousness and had been transferred to pediatrics for monitoring.

She had suffered a "tremendous fright" and burst into tears when she saw her family, the hospital said.

Physicians said the girl had not been intubated and her lungs were still partly flooded with water, leaving her at risk of bacterial infection.

Heavy Rain

Heavy rain in Taiwan brought flooding to large swaths of Northern Taiwan on Friday as the Central Weather Bureau (CWB) upgraded its weather warnings to cover the northeast coast.

Multiple rain-induced disasters have been reported, include a tractor falling into a ravine in New Taipei's Gongliao District. The driver of the vehicle has since been rescued and dispatched to hospital.

The resulting floods and imminent threat of more rain have prompted authorities to cancel school in New Taipei's Shimen, Jinshan, Wanli and Sanzhi districts.

New Taipei Mayor Eric Chu has canceled all previously scheduled events for the day and is making inspection tours of disaster areas.

Accumulated rainfall had reached alarming levels of well over 400 millimeters of rain in Shimen, Shanzhi and Jinshan Districts, according to CWB measurements from midnight to 8:10 a.m. Heavy rain warnings were expanded on Friday to include Keelung and the island's northeast coast.

Periodic heavy rain warnings were issued for other parts of Taiwan including mountainous areas of Taichung, Nantou, Chiayi, Kaohsiung and Pingtung.

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