Airlines cancel flights, ferries halt services as Super Typhoon Mangkhut heads to Hong Kong and China

Airlines cancel flights, ferries halt services as Super Typhoon Mangkhut heads to Hong Kong and China

At least two people have died after a massive storm brought destruction to the northern Philippines.

Typhoon Mangkhut ripped through the Philippines’ main island of Luzon, and is now moving west towards China.

Almost all buildings in the city of Tuguegarao sustained some damage, a government official said, and communications were down in places.

More than four million people were in the path of the storm, which packed winds of 185km/h (115mph).

Thousands were evacuated amid warnings of 6m (20ft) storm surges.

In the first confirmed deaths, two rescuers were killed trying to help people trapped in a landslide.

There are unconfirmed reports of casualties in the coastal town of Aparri. The evacuation centre there is said to have been destroyed and phone networks are down.

The deadliest storm on record in the Philippines was Super Typhoon Haiyan in 2013, which killed more than 7,000.

Airlines across the region cancelled hundred of flights on Saturday (Sept 15) as Super Typhoon Mangkhut slammed into the Philippines and was set to disrupt travel from Hong Kong to Japan.

Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd. cancelled more than 400 flights over the next three days and warned of “serious disruptions” for air travellers as Super Typhoon Mangkhut approaches Hong Kong.

The airline had said earlier it was cancelling all flights in and out of Hong Kong on Sunday beginning at 2.30am, and wouldn’t resume operations until 4am the following day.

Cathay Dragon also won’t be flying.

AirAsia Group had cancelled at least 22 flights as of Saturday morning, upsetting travellers from Manila to Shenzhen and Macau, according to a Facebook post.

Philippines Airlines scrapped 41 Saturday flights, including those to Hangzhou and Tokyo, it said on Facebook.

It will almost certainly get worse.

Mangkhut, which is being called the world’s most powerful storm this year, ripped into the northern Philippines on Saturday as a Category 5 storm, bringing winds of up to 269kmh.

n southern China, ferry services in Qiongzhou Strait have been halted on Saturday morning as Mangkhut is approaching the provinces of Hainan and Guangdong, the local authorities said.

Mangkhut is expected to land in an area between western Guangdong and eastern Hainan on Sunday night, packing strong gales and bringing heavy downpours.

According to China’s National Meteorological Centre, Mangkhut was moving north-westward at a speed of 26kmh at 8am, about 1,000km away from the city of Yangjiang, Guangdong province.

The provincial maritime administration has dispatched helicopters and tugboats to transfer 3,238 offshore platform workers and ordered 6,266 ships to take precautions against the typhoon.

Mary Greeley News