China’s financial hub of Shanghai was at a virtual standstill as a massive typhoon that swept across eastern China over the weekend threatened more damage as it makes landfall on Monday, after forcing the evacuation of hundreds of thousands of people and disrupting travel around the region over the weekend.
Typhoon In-Fa slammed down on Zhoushan city in neighboring Zhejiang province on Sunday, prompting local authorities to evacuate more than 100,000 people and shut schools, markets and businesses. It made landfall again in Pinghu city, south of Shanghai, at around 9:50 a.m. on Monday, the Xinhua News Agency reported. It’s expected to arrive in Shanghai’s Jinshan district later today, the local government said, citing the national meteorological center.
The financial center was hit hard by the stormy weather over the weekend, with images of street flooding, flying debris and uprooted trees making the social media rounds. The local government curbed outdoor activities and shut tourist areas including the historic Bund riverfront. Flights in and out of the city’s two major airports were cancelled, while high-speed trains and some metro lines were suspended. Shanghai had relocated over 360,000 people as of 10 p.m. Sunday, mostly from the Pudong district, the China News Service said. No deaths or injuries had been reported so far.
China earlier issued an orange alert for In-Fa, the second highest in its four-tier color-coded weather system, and took heavy precautions ahead of the storm after last week’s historic flooding in central Henan province where at least 63 people died. Yangshan Port evacuated hundreds of vessels as wind speeds off the coast reached up to 102 kilometers per hour, Xinhua News Agency reported, citing the port’s bureau of maritime affairs. All large container ships were evacuated over the weekend.
Some flights may resume later on Monday, depending on weather conditions, according to Shanghai Airport Group Co., which operates the Pudong and Hongqiao airports. Some rail lines will remain shut for the whole day, the city government said in a social media post, citing the local railway bureau.
Shanghai’s benchmark stock index fell 2.2% by the end of the morning session, after China continued its crackdown against private education companies.