Super typhoon Meranti kills 7, injures 9 in China

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Beijing, Sep 16 (IANS) Super typhoon Meranti left at least seven people dead and nine missing in the Chinese province of Fujian before weakening to a tropical storm, the local authorities said on Friday.

Meranti, the year’s most powerful typhoon, had earlier claimed one life and injured 51 in Taiwan, before slamming into Xiamen in the eastern Fujian province early Thursday, Efe news agency reported.

In Fujian, where the typhoon made landfall and which region was the worst-affected, 331,000 people were displaced, 1,600 houses were destroyed and 22,200 hectares (54,857 acres) of cultivable land damaged.

The typhoon also led to direct economic losses of around $249 million.

China’s Ministry of Civil Affairs and the National Commission for Disaster Reduction, have deployed working groups to assess the damage and to help with rescue and relief operations.

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Meanwhile, authorities are working round the clock to fix power and water supply in some areas of Xiamen, which witnessed complete power outage on Thursday.

Water supply has been fixed in almost the entire city even as thousands of workers try to restore three electricity towers shaken by the strong winds, said local authorities.

In Xiamen, the typhoon left one dead, displaced 46,327 people, damaged 113 houses and felled 350,000 trees, reported official news agency Xinhua Friday.

Meranti, now a tropical storm, is approaching the north of the country and heavy rainfall is expected in parts of Fujian as well as the eastern provinces of Zhejiang, Jiangxi, Jiangsu, Anhui and the city of Shanghai.

The National Meteorological Center had issued a blue alert Friday, the least severe on the country’s four-colour alert system.

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