Asia

Typhoon Soudelor: Trail of damage in south-east China

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Media captionParts of south-eastern China have been badly affected, with homes being evacuated

At least 14 people have died in south-eastern China after a powerful typhoon caused floods and mudslides.

Thousands were evacuated and large areas left without power as Typhoon Soudelor barrelled through Fujian and Zhejiang provinces on Saturday.

Some counties saw 70cm (27 inches) of rain in 24 hours, the heaviest for 120 years, said state media.

The typhoon earlier swept across Taiwan, leaving at least six people dead and several missing.

Half-a-million people were still without power on the island on Sunday, the Taiwan Power Co said.

Soudelor has now weakened to a tropical storm as it heads inland.

Image copyright Reuters
Image caption Some areas saw their heaviest rainfall for a century
Image copyright AFP
Image caption A window broken by the winds of Typhoon Soudelor in Xiamen, Fujian province
Image copyright AFP
Image caption A handout picture from a fire department in Taiwan shows the rescue of a young child

Fujian raised its typhoon alert to the highest level in anticipation of the storm, with at least 163,000 people evacuated to higher ground. There were reports of more evacuations in neighbouring Zhejiang.

In Fujian's main city, Fuzhou, more than 10,000 trees were blown down and there was widespread flooding.

Rail services and flights were cancelled and schools and offices closed.

Twelve people were killed as heavy downpours caused mudslides in rural areas of Wenzhou municipality, in the south of Zhejiang province, Xinhua news agency reported.

Another two people were killed in nearby Lishui, and four people were reported missing, said Xinhua.

The news agency said 1.58 million people had been affected across the region, and that damages to crops and housing was estimated to be some 4bn yuan (£416m; $644m).

Soudelor made landfall in Taiwan earlier on Saturday, with winds of more than 230km/h (142mph), ripping up trees tearing down billboards and triggering landslides.

Among the victims were an eight-year-old girl and her mother who were swept out to sea.

A firefighter was reportedly killed after being hit by a drunk driver as he tried to move a fallen tree.

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