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Military ready to provide relief as tropical storm nears

2012/06/18 21:41:14

Taipei, June 18 (CNA) The Ministry of National Defense said on Monday it has 47,000-plus personnel on standby and dozens of rescue helicopters ready to provide rescue and relief assistance, as Taiwan is likely to be hit by a tropical storm that is expected to bring heavy rainfall.

In a statement released Monday, the ministry said it has also opened an emergency response center to deal with any problems triggered by Tropical Storm Talim.

A total of 47,843 military personnel are ready to engage in the rescue work, along with three S-70C rescue helicopters, 19 UH-1H utility choppers, one C-130 transport plane and one E-2T early-warning aircraft, the ministry said.

It added it will keep a close eye on the latest development of the storm and will cooperate closely with local governments to provide assistance in a timely manner.

Talim, likely to be the first storm to hit Taiwan this year, is expected to bring heavy rainfall around the island, the Central Weather Bureau said earlier in the day.

The bureau said it may issue a sea warning for Talim by Monday night or Tuesday morning, but it had not decided on a land warning.

The tropical storm, in combination with a southwest air current, could bring heavy rain to Taiwan from Tuesday to Friday, with central and southern Taiwan likely to see between 1,200 and 1,500 millimeters of rainfall over that period, the bureau warned.

(By Elaine Hou)