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Sunday, July 12, 2009

Soudelor sweeps ashore - heavy rain and winds

Tropical storm Soudelor lands in south China (XinhuaNet)

The storm hit Wenchang of Hainan Island at 5:30 a.m. and moved further inland at Nanshan Township of Guangdong in the mainland at 8:20 a.m., with a speed of up to 65 kilometers per hour at the eye, according to the Guangdong provincial meteorological administration.

The storm, which formed in the sea to the north of Luzon Island, Philippines, on Friday, packed winds of up to 97.2 km per hour and downpours to the western coast of Guangdong.

Tropical storm Soudelor made landfall this evening(local time) along the Hai Phong coast in Vietnam with winds of 62 - 70 kph and heavy rain. The key cincern is flooding in the mountainous provinces of the north. From VOV News:

Storm Soudeler ripped through the northern coastal region on the afternoon of July 12 and lashed the area with heavy rains, according to the National Hydro-Meteorological Forecasting Centre.

At 16.00 on July 12, the storm was positioned at 20.8 degrees north latitude and 107.8 degrees east longitude, about 70km southeast of Quang Ninh-Hai Phong coastline. It was packing maximum sustained winds of between 62-74kph near its centre.

In the next 12 hours, it is expected to move west and north west at a speed of 20-25kph and slam into the north-eastern coastal provinces. In the afternoon, the storm will sweep across provinces from Nam Dinh to Quang Ninh and be downgraded into a tropical depression after making landfall.

The National Hydro-Meteorological Forecasting Centre warned northern coastal provinces of heavy rains, high sea surges, flash floods and landslides.

Flooding and landslides are a major concern with this storm as this areat has been hit with heavy rain quite a bit this year. Soudelor is the fourth storm to affect the region this year and heavy rain caused flooding and mudslides just last week in Bac Kan Province.

Vietnam battens down the hatches for year’s fourth storm(Thanh

Soudeler is expected to lash the coastal areas from Quang Ninh to Nam Dinh provinces in the north with strong winds and heavy rain. Hai instructed local governments there to ban local fishermen from going to sea beginning late Saturday.

Residents had to be evacuated by this morning, Hai said.

Mountainous northern provinces including Bac Kan Province needed to prepare residential areas vulnerable to landslides and flash floods for immediate evacuation, Hai said. At least 13 people were killed in floods since last Saturday in Bac Kan Province.

The eye of Storm Soudeler was around 550 kilometers southeast off the Quang Ninh-Hai Phong coasts as of 7 p.m. Saturday, the Central Hydro-meteorological Forecast Center said with winds reaching 70 kilometers per hour (kph).

The storm would continue in the northwestern direction for the next 48 hours at 20 kph, the center said, before weakening into a tropical depression on Monday.

Northern coastal areas and the Gulf of Tonkin would experience rough seas, the center said.

Heavy rains were also expected in northern provinces, it added.

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