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Torrential rain batters northern Taiwan

2012/06/16 17:33:49

Taipei, June 16 (CNA) A strong weather front brought torrentialdownpours to northern Taiwan Saturday, with hourly precipitation ofmore than 80 mm recorded in Taipei that afternoon, according to theCentral Weather Bureau.

The rain could continue into the night in northern and centralTaiwan, the bureau said, warning that it could trigger flooding and mudslides in mountainous areas.

Less severe weather is expected after Sunday as the front leaves Taiwan, but the approach of Typhoon Guchol might bring another wave of rainfall to southern Taiwan June 19-22, the bureau said.

Guchol itself is not likely to hit Taiwan directly, but could bringsimilar levels of precipitation experienced around Taiwan over thepast week.

Six people have died from mudslides or drowning over the week-longperiod, with extensive damage to farmland, schools, roads and bridges.

As of Saturday afternoon, Guchol was centered 1,290 km southeast of Taiwan's southernmost tip, moving at 23 kph in a north-northwesterly direction and packing maximum sustained winds of 154 kph, with gusts reaching 190 kph.

(By Lee Hsin-Yin)