Ministry of the Interior heightens alert as tropical storm Atsani is closing in on Taiwa
The latest weather update indicates that the center of tropical storm Atsani is located 150 km or as southeast of Erluanbi as of 08:00 today (Nov 6) and moving at 13 km/h toward west northwest. Its storm circle has reached Bashi Strait and southeastern seas of Taiwan, posing a threat to Taitung (including Lanyu and Ludao), Pingtung, Hengchuan Peninsula, Kaohsiung and Tainan. All citizens are advised to prepare for strong winds and rainfall.
The information of Central Weather Bureau suggests that Atsani is moving more toward north than was expected and the warning covers Taitung, Pingtung, Kaohsiung and Tainan. The circle of storm is expected to make landfall 11:00 today. Commander Hsu Kuo-yung, Minister of the Interior, called for the fourth work report and information assessment meeting at 09:00, instructing local governments to escalate the response level as appropriate while asking all departments of government and functional groups for the following preparations:
1.The same as the previous three meetings, all citizens are advised against activities at sea or in the mountains. Coastal areas should stay on high alert and safety is advised for all vessels operating at seas and all crews onboard, in addition to strengthened protection for coasting fish farming and supplies of utility and substances for remote islands. All agencies (departments) and functional groups are instructed to have response preparation in place.
2.Long waves have been spotted along the northern coasts of Keelung and the coasts of eastern Taiwan (including Lanyu and Ludao) and southwestern Taiwan and Hengchuan Peninsula. Local governments are instructed to intensify police patrol and Coast Guard Administration to provide assistance in crowd control. In addition, the Ministry of Transportation and Communications is requested to get the words out on sea and air transports affected by the weathers via as many available means as possible.
3.The Central Weather Bureau predicts level 10 or even stronger gusts in open areas along Hengchuan Peninsula and southeastern coasts, as well as level 8 or 9 gusts at open areas of eastern and western coasts as well as in Penghu, Kinmen and Matsu. Also, there is a possibility to see strong gusts in Taipei Basin and, therefore, all citizens are advised to check their shop signs, scaffoldings and advertisement objects and secure them if necessary, while staying indoors away from possible dangers. Transportation authorities are instructed to oversee ship mooring at berthing spots.
4.In addition to the warnings above, governments of all levels are encouraged to prepare for emergency response and report any damage found as part of their duty. There is still uncertainty as where the storm may travel to. For this, all citizens are advised to stay on high alert and minimize possible damages.
Ministry of the Interior would like to exploit this opportunity to advise people to stay home and prepare for the typhoon, and warn against hiking, river tracing, tide watching, water activities or fishing at no-go areas during the typhoon. Stay updated for the typhoon information and remembers, it is the safest to stay home.
For the latest information of tropical storm Atsani and disasters caused, please visit the disaster information website at www.emic.gov.tw/ and the fan page of National Fire Agency, MOI at www.facebook.com/NFA999/. (Edited by Leng, Chia-Yu, Tel: 02-81966100)