HONG KONG — Tens of thousands of people were evacuated from their homes in Shanghai early Sunday after Typhoon In-fa barreled into China‘s east coast.
Days after unprecedented flooding devastated huge parts of the country’s center, forcing more than 1 million people from their homes, around 330,000 residents were evacuated from Shanghai’s Fengxian District, the state-run newspaper China Daily reported.
After In-fa made landfall at about 12:30 p.m. local time (12:30 a.m. ET), Zhejiang province was buffeted with wind of up to 60 mph, state TV reported, citing the national weather agency. Forecasters predicted 10 to 14 inches of rain.
Authorities in Shanghai, a city of around 26 million people, ordered the public to stay indoors and canceled inbound and outbound flights from Shanghai Pudong and Shanghai Hongqiao international airports. More flights are likely to be canceled Monday, state TV reported.
Shanghai, the country’s commercial hub, also closed many services and businesses and slowed or suspended subway trains as rain battered the region.
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“We will make every effort to ensure the safety of people’s lives and property and do everything to minimize disaster losses and strive to achieve the goal of no deaths and few injuries and economic losses,” Yuan Jiajun, the Zhejiang province Communist Party secretary, said during an inspection of preparations Saturday, state media reported.
The Meteorological Administration said In-fa was moving at 9 mph.
The Zhejiang emergency management department upgraded its typhoon response to the highest level Saturday, closing schools and markets. Road traffic in certain areas was suspended.
In-fa hit as China is still reeling from flooding that killed at least 58 people in central China after record rain hit the major city of Zhengzhou on Tuesday, washing away vehicles and stranding people.
The rapidly rising waters in the subway system killed at least 12 people, several buildings lost power, and the streets were filled with debris and mud, prompting a major rescue and cleanup operation.
Direct economic losses were estimated at 13.9 billion yuan ($2 billion), The Associated Press reported, citing the Xinhua news agency. It added that more than 3,800 houses collapsed across the province and that 920,000 people were evacuated.
The Associated Press and Reuters contributed.