China: TS Muifa tracking north-northwestward across the Yellow Sea early Sept. 15 /update 9

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Event

Tropical Storm Muifa is tracking north-northwestward across the Yellow Sea as of early Sept. 15 following landfall near Zhoushan in Zheijang Province at around 20:30 CST the previous day. As of 11:00 CST, the system’s center of circulation was approximately 183 km (114 miles) north-northwest of Shanghai, China.

Forecast models indicate that the storm will continue to track north-northwestward across the Yellow Sea and make further landfalls over eastern Shandong Province late Sept. 15 and far southern Liaoning Province the afternoon of Sept. 16. Muifa will weaken rapidly and probably dissipate over central Jilin Province early Sept. 17. Some uncertainty remains in the track and intensity forecast, and significant changes could occur in the coming days.

As of early Sept. 15, the China Meteorological Administration had issued a yellow typhoon warning (the second-lowest level on a four-tier scale), cautioning that strong winds are forecast over many eastern coastal waters, as well as coastal areas of Zhejiang, Jiangsu, Shanghai, and Shandong through at least early Sept. 16. A yellow rainstorm warning is in place. Heavy rainfall is likely in parts of northeastern Jiangsu, southeastern Jilin, central and eastern Liaoning, and central and eastern Shandong provinces, with the heaviest downpours likely over southern and eastern Liaoning and western Shandong provinces. Rainfall totals of 10-13 cm (4-5 inches) are possible over parts of the affected area and downpours may be accompanied by thunderstorm activity.

Additionally, flood warnings are in place for southern Liaoning, eastern Shandong, eastern Jiangsu, and eastern Zhejiang provinces. Landslide warnings are in effect over parts of southern Liaoning, southeastern Shandong, southern and northeastern Jiangsu, central and northern Zhejiang, and southeastern Anhui provinces, with the highest risk over parts of northeastern Zhejiang Province. Officials will likely issue relevant weather alerts and warnings over the coming days as the system progresses.

As of Sept. 14, authorities in Zhejiang Province have relocated more than 1.1 million people at risk ahead of the approach of the storm. Authorities have ordered all fishing vessels to return to port. More than 11,000 commercial vessels are sheltering in ports across the province, including Zhoushan, Ningbo, and Taizhou ports. Authorities have also suspended passenger ship routes.

Shanghai authorities have suspended all port operations from early Sept. 14 as well as some train services in the Yangtze River Delta region in advance of the storm. Some shipping services, including the high-speed ships between Chongming and Baoyang and between Baozhen and Baoyang, are also suspended.

Officials canceled flights at Zhoushan Airport (HSN) and Ningbo Lishe International Airport (NSB) in Zheijang Province and at Shanghai’s Pudong (PVG) and Hongqiao international airports (SHA) Sept. 14. Flights operations have partially resumed at the affected airports as of Sept. 15.

Sustained heavy rainfall could trigger flooding in low-lying areas and those with easily overwhelmed drainage systems. Localized evacuations, flash flooding, and landslides are possible if weather conditions prove hazardous. The inclement weather could trigger localized business, transport, and utility disruptions, rendering some bridges or roadways impassable. Flight disruptions at other regional airports and temporary closures of ports may occur. Raw sewage and other hazardous materials mixed with floodwaters pose a serious health threat.

Advice

Activate contingency plans in areas where officials forecast typhoon or tropical storm conditions. Heed any evacuation orders that may be issued. Use extreme caution in low-lying coastal areas and near streams, creeks, and other waterways due to the potential for severe flooding and storm surge. Stockpile water, batteries, and other essentials in advance. Charge battery-powered devices when electricity is available; restrict the use of cellular phones to emergencies only. Power down mobile devices when not in use. Keep important documents and necessary medications in waterproof containers. Observe strict food and water precautions, as municipalities could issue boil water advisories following flooding events. Take precautions against insect- and waterborne diseases in the coming weeks.

Plan accordingly for protracted commercial, transport, and logistics disruptions in areas in the storm’s path, especially if vital infrastructure is damaged. Seek updated information on road conditions before driving or routing shipments through areas where flooding has occurred. Confirm flights before checking out of hotels or driving to the airport; clearing passenger backlogs may take several days in some locations.

Resources

Joint Typhoon Warning Center
China Meteorological Administration


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