China issues red alert for Typhoon Lekima
China's National Meteorological Center issued a top-level red alert for Typhoon Lekima on Friday morning, as it is expected to make landfall in the coastal areas of eastern Zhejiang Province Saturday.
At 8am, the center of Typhoon Lekima, the ninth typhoon of the year, was about 290 km southeast of the city of Wenling in Zhejiang, with a maximum wind force of 209 kph.
The typhoon will move northwest at a speed of about 13 kph, with gradually weakening force, the center said, adding that it will land in the coastal areas in Zhejiang Province Saturday morning.
At noon on Friday, Zhejiang renewed its emergency response to the top level. The province has shut down multiple entries of local highways and suspended part of the railway lines. Wenzhou Airport in the province has canceled 92 flights.
The province has suspended ferry rides on Beiji island, a tourist attraction to the east of the coast, and evacuated over 200 tourists there.
From Friday to Saturday, Lekima is expected to bring heavy rain to provinces of Anhui, Fujian, Jiangsu and Zhejiang, and the municipality of Shanghai.
At 9am, east China's Jiangsu Province raised its emergency response to level III, according to the provincial flood control and drought relief headquarters.
Due to the rain, Jiangsu has suspended over 130 trains departing from the provincial capital Nanjing in the following days.