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Two drown, one missing in eastern Taiwan as typhoon approaches

2015/08/07 15:20:25

Update:
●Aug. 8: 4 dead, 1 missing as Typhoon Soudelor wreaks havoc in Taiwan

Taipei, Aug. 7 (CNA) An 8-year-old girl who was swept out to sea on a beach in Yilan County on Thursday was still missing as of Friday afternoon despite rescue attempts by emergency workers earlier in the day, the Central Emergency Operation Center (CEOC) said.

The Coast Guard unit based in Suao Township said its boats were sent out at 6 a.m. but recalled because of high winds and rough seas.

The girl's twin sister and their mother died after the three of them and another 8-year-old girl who survived were taken from shallow waters on Suao Township's Neipi beach by swells that may have been caused by the approaching Typhoon Soudelor, according to authorities.

The surviving girl managed to stay alive by clinging to the body of the twins' mother before they were plucked from the water, rescue workers said.

Experts warned of the false sense of security that people can feel when playing in dangerous coastal areas in eastern Taiwan.

Clear weather before a typhoon often causes people to underestimate the power of swells, or long unbroken waves, Chao Tsai-sheng, National Taitung University's Department of Somatics and Sport Leisure Industry, was quoted as saying in Apple Daily, a local newspaper.

Typhoon Soudelor remains on course to run directly into Taiwan and was expected to make landfall in eastern Taiwan early Saturday.

(By Worthy Shen and Hu Xiangjie)
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