Dramatic Rescues as Typhoon Lekima Hits China

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The deaths were caused by a landslide triggered by the storm's downpours in the municipality of Wenzhou, around 400 kilometres south of Shanghai, national television station CCTV reported.

The super typhoon brought torrential rain and heavy winds that knocked out power and downed thousands of trees.

Some train services between Zhejiang and northern China were also disrupted, and hundreds of flights at various airports were reportedly canceled.

It has already damaged more than 189,000 hectares (about 467,000 acres) of crops and 36,000 homes in Zhejiang, and provincial authorities estimated the economic losses to be around 16.6 billion yuan ($2.35 billion), the state news agency Xinhua said on August 11. Twenty people were still missing, according to Zhejiang provincial authorities.

As the typhoon swept through Shanghai, about 253,000 people in the city have been evacuated to safe places, Shanghai flood control authorities said.

More than a million people were evacuated from their homes ahead of the typhoon, Xinhua news agency reported.

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China is routinely hit by typhoons in its hot summer months but weather officials said last week they have been relatively infrequent so far this year.

Lekima, which has been downgraded to a tropical storm, is expected to dump heavy rain on China's north-east in the coming days as it moves up the Pacific coast.

The typhoon made landfall early on Saturday, first hitting Wenling city in Zheijiang before making its way north towards the densely populated city of Shanghai.

China's weather bureau on Saturday issued an orange alert, its second highest, after putting out a red alert on Friday, when the storm forced flight cancellations in Taiwan and shut markets and businesses on the island.

Mainland China's main financial hub had braced for Lekima after the typhoon ravaged Taiwan and affected Japan.

Lekima passed over Shanghai, where some 250,000 residents were evacuated.

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