03:11 - Source: CNN
Chinese coast slammed by massive storms

Story highlights

Typhoon Chan-hom is expected to hit eastern China on Saturday

People are being evacuated from coastal areas in Zhejiang province, state media say

Another storm, Linfa, weakened rapidly after disrupting air traffic in Hong Kong

Hong Kong CNN  — 

China is bracing for the arrival of a strong storm this weekend after an earlier one fizzled out over land.

Typhoon Chan-hom was churning near Japan’s Ryuku Islands early Friday, with maximum sustained winds of around 213 kph (132 mph).

It’s forecast to weaken somewhat before hitting the densely populated eastern Chinese province of Zhejiang on Saturday, but it could still pack the punch of a Category 2 hurricane, according to the U.S. Joint Typhoon Warning Center.

Authorities in Zhejiang are evacuating people from coastal areas in preparation for the typhoon’s arrival, state media reported. The storm is predicted to lose strength over the weekend as it moves toward Shanghai, China’s most populous city.

Chan-hom’s strong winds and torrential rain were also forecast to affect northern Taiwan, where some school and office closures were expected Friday afternoon, according to local media.

‘Storm in a teacup’

To the southwest, residents of Guangdong province and Hong Kong were getting back to business after disruption brought by Tropical Storm Linfa.

The storm resulted in the closure late Thursday of Hong Kong International Airport, one of Asia’s key aviation hubs, upsetting the travel plans of thousands of passengers.

Approximately 1,020 flights to and from the airport had to be rescheduled because of the weather system, an airport authority spokesman told CNN.

But Linfa, which had made landfall Thursday in Guangdong as a typhoon, lost strength rapidly as it passed near Hong Kong, prompting the South China Morning Post newspaper to describe it as a “storm in a teacup.”

No deaths or serious injuries were reported in Hong Kong or Guangdong as a result of the weather system. By Friday morning, it had weakened into a lower pressure area, according to the Hong Kong Observatory.

Earlier in the week, Linfa had brought heavy rainfall to the northern Philippines, including Manila, the capital.

A third storm, Nangka, is the most powerful of the lot. It reached supertyphoon strength Thursday with winds of 250 kph (150 mph).

But Nangka is far out in the Pacific Ocean and isn’t expected to hit any land over the next five days.

CNN’s Jethro Mullen reported and wrote from Hong Kong, and Laura-Smith Spark from London. CNN’s Elizabeth Joseph, Brandon Miller and Judson Jones contributed to this report.