Typhoon Rammasun approached south China's coastal regions Wednesday, packing strong gales and heavy rain.


The eye of Typhoon Rammasun was about 1,080 kilometers southeast of Zhanjiang City in Guangdong Province at 5 p.m. Wednesday, the provincial weather bureau said.


"It is moving northwest at 25 km per hour and is likely to make landfall in the west of Guangdong Province or in Hainan on Friday," said Cheng Zhengquan, chief weatherman with the provincial meteorological station.


On making landfall, strong gales, downpours and high tides are to be expected along the Guangdong coast, he said. Most parts of Guangdong Province are in for downpours from Thursday to Saturday.


Gales of over 100 km per hour are expected in central and northern areas of the South China Sea from Wednesday to Friday. Occasional gales might top 150 km per hour.


Shipping will be halted indefinitely from 8 a.m. Thursday on the Qiongzhou Strait in south China's island province of Hainan, according to the maritime affairs bureau in Haikou, the provincial capital.


Maritime authorities in Zhanjiang City called back 54 passenger ships and sent typhoon alarms to more than 260 cargo ships and 37 ferries.


Typhoon Rammasun killed at least 10 people in the Philippines and shut down the capital, Manila, cutting power and prompting the evacuation of more than 400,000 residents.




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