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Emergency center on the watch for Typhoon Nanmadol

2011/08/27 18:27:04

Taipei, Aug. 27 (CNA) The Central Emergency Operation Center announced Saturday that it was standing by to deal with any contingencies triggered by a fast-approaching typhoon.

Though the Central Weather Bureau (CWB) said Typhoon Nanmadol had weakened to a "medium-strength" typhoon, the commission warned that it still posed a potential threat to Taiwan.

The CWB said that as of 5:30 p.m., Typhoon Nanmadol was centered 350 kilometers south-southeast of Taiwan's southernmost point of Eluanbi, moving in a north-northwesterly direction at a speed of 9 kilometers per hour.

After issuing a sea warning Saturday morning for the Bashi Channel, the CWB issued a similar alert in the afternoon for waters off southeastern Taiwan and did not rule out the possibility of issuing a land warning Saturday evening at the earliest. According to bureau officials a land warning may be issued at 8:30 p.m.

According to the emergency center, Nanmadol's outer periphery was likely to affect northern and eastern Taiwan Saturday and Sunday and warned that the country's entire eastern seaboard should prepare for torrential downpour and strong winds.

Waves as high as 3-5 meters have appeared in waters off southeastern Taiwan and Green and Orchid islands, and the emergency center urged fishermen to stay at home.

High waves were also been detected off Hualien, according to local authorities, who expected fishing ports operating out of ports there would return home by Saturday evening.

Hualien police set up a blockade along the coast to prevent people from approaching the seashore to watch waves.

The emergency center also cautioned local authorities to prepare for preventive evacuations and to continue monitoring the development of the typhoon.

In addition, it asked residents in mountainous areas to remain alert to possible landslides, falling stones, and floods and suggested that activities in the mountains should be avoided.

Meanwhile, resorts in vacation destination Kenting have started to see reservation cancellations.

Strong winds, a drizzle and high waves appeared in the area Saturday afternoon, while beaches and other scenic spots in Kenting were closed after the CWB issued its sea warning.

(By Andrew Liu and Jamie Wang)