Friday, August 24, 2012

Typhoon Tembin: 5000 flee as Taiwan typhoon closes in

TAIWAN evacuated nearly 5000 people ahead of Typhoon Tembin, as a military official warned major measures were needed a avoid a repeat of a deadly disaster three years ago.

About 50,000 soldiers were on standby on the island, where memories are still raw from Typhoon Morakot, which killed about 600 people in August 2009, most of them buried in huge landslides in the south.

"Those evacuated are either from low-lying areas or places prone to landslides. This means they will not be caught totally unprepared if natural disasters were to happen," defence ministry spokesman David Lo told AFP.

"We need to adopt this type of preventive measure because of the painful lesson in 2009 when Typhoon Morakot pounded Taiwan, and we had not done enough evacuation beforehand."

As the typhoon drew nearer, local governments in the east, south and centre of the island announced late in the day that schools and offices will be closed today. Read More