A total of 52 flights have been cancelled today in anticipation of tropical typhoon Hato, which is expected to make landfall this morning along the southern Chinese coast, according to yesterday’s forecast by the Meteorological and Geophysical Bureau (SMG).
Yesterday, Juneyao Airlines cancelled its flights to and from Shanghai, which were scheduled to depart and arrive in Macau at 9:55 p.m and 9:10 p.m., respectively.
Information released last night from the Administration of Airports showed that the cancelled fights are mainly routes today to and from the mainland. Others were scheduled to fly routes to Manila, Bangkok and Kuala Lumpur.
Air Macau is also delaying its routes to and from Tokyo’s Narita Airport as well as Fukuoka, while AirAsia has rescheduled its Bangkok and Chiang Mai flights.
The bureau hoisted Signal No.1, the lowest warning for a tycoon, early yesterday. By midnight, a notice had been posted on the SMG website that the signal might be elevated to Signal No.3 between 1 a.m. and 3 a.m this morning.
SMG told the Times that raising the signal would depend on the wind force in the region.
“The wind and weather affecting the flight depends on the airplane type, pilot and the wind speed of the cross wind,” it said.
“If [the cross wind] is too strong, [it] may affect the landing and departure of the flight, but different types of airplanes can or cannot have difficulties when around the different cross winds,” it added, noting that pilot technique remains a factor.
TurboJET has also adjusted its ferry schedule, suspending its routes to and from the Outer Harbor Ferry Terminal and Shenzhen Airport Fu Yong Ferry Terminal.
While most ferry routes to and from Macau will proceed as scheduled, the last ferry to Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA) from the Outer Harbor departed at 5 p.m. yesterday, while a ferry from Macau to the airport last sailed at 7:45 p.m.
TurboJET was also operating limited services on its Outer Harbor – Shekou route.
The movement of the typhoon last night was 25 km/hour, while its maximum wind speed was 118 km/hour.
SMG warned drivers that winds over the bridges would be strong, and to pay attention to traffic safety.
The forecast today is expected to be cloudy, with showers and thunder at first, and force 4 to 6 north to-northwesterly winds becoming force 6 to 8 southerly winds with gusts.
In Hong Kong, the typhoon is expected to fall within 100km of the city today.
According to Hong Kong reports, airlines have warned passengers of severe impact on flights in and out of HKIA from today until tomorrow morning.
The majority of flights between 6 a.m. and 5 p.m. will be axed due to the storm, which is expected to affect hundreds of flights in the region.
In Guangdong’s neighboring Fujian Province, more than 4,000 fish farmers and their families retreated inland on Monday. All fishing boats returned to the harbor yesterday.
Around 90 bullet trains between Shenzhen and cities in Fujian and Jiangxi provinces have been cancelled today, according to a Xinhua report.
China’s national weather observatory issued an orange alert, the first level of its four-
tier color-coded system for severe weather.
The National Meteorological Center (NMC) said in a statement that the 13th tropical cyclone in the region this year will move northwest to make landfall in Guangdong today, and lose strength as it moves further west. Guangdong, Fujian, Zhejiang and Taiwan will see torrential rain and gales in the coming days.
The NMC has recommended that local governments take precautions against possible geological disasters, and that ships in affected areas should return to port.
Macau records highest temperature since 1930
Macau yesterday registered the highest temperature since the year 1930, according to a TDM report. The record temperature, 39 degrees Celsius, was detected at a weather station in Ka Ho, Coloane. At the Macau Ferry Terminal, the temperature registered 38.9 degrees Celsius. Another station at Tai Tam Hill recorded 38 degrees Celsius. The Meteorological and Geophysical Bureau stated that the high temperatures were being caused by the incoming typhoon.