A second tropical storm has swept into southern China, lashing Hong Kong and Macau with heavy rain and strong wind as the region reels from the strongest typhoon in decades that left at least 22 dead.
Severe Tropical Storm Pakhar made landfall west of the Chinese casino hub of Macau in the early morning, packing maximum sustained winds of 55mph and gusts of up to 65mph.
Forecasters in Hong Kong and Macau raised a storm signal two notches below the maximum, forcing schools and businesses to close, ferry operators to halt services and airlines to delay or cancel some flights. The storm is expected to move further inland and gradually weaken later on Sunday.
On Wednesday, Typhoon Hato left a trail of devastation as it barrelled through the region, killing at least 22 people, including nine in Macau and nine more on mainland China. The storm’s toll in Macau sparked a furious response by people in the casino hub, who complained of the government’s slow response.
The city’s chief weather officer was forced to resign because of the criticism. In an unprecedented move, soldiers from China’s People’s Liberation Army left their barracks to help residents and crews clean up the mess.