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Typhoon Lekima sweeps through eastern China, killing at least 30

By
Allen Cone
Rescuers work on a landslide triggered by Typhoon Lekima in Yongjia county, Zhejiang province, China, on Sunday. Photo by Xiang Qi/EPA
Rescuers work on a landslide triggered by Typhoon Lekima in Yongjia county, Zhejiang province, China, on Sunday. Photo by Xiang Qi/EPA

Aug. 11 (UPI) -- The death toll from typhoon Lekima climbed to at least 30 in eastern China after landfall, authorities said Sunday.

In addition, 18 others remain missing, state-run Xinhua reported.

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On Saturday, the death toll was listed as 22 after making landfall around 1:45 a.m. The ninth typhoon of the year and the strongest so far, barreled onshore near Shitangzhen in the province of Zhejiang.

Winds of 116 mile per hour -- equivalent to a Category 3 hurricane -- were recorded.

Lekima was moving northward along the east coast of Shandong Province with a second landing along the coastline in Shandong late Sunday, the National Meteorological Center said.

In all, close to 5 million people in Zhejiang were affected, including 1.08 million people evacuated, the provincial flood control headquarters said. In Shanghai, about 253,000 people were evacuated, Shanghai flood control authorities said.

Most deaths occurred in Yongjia County, administered by Wenzhou City, when a barrier lake burst and flooded waters swept people away. Torrential downpours caused a landslide that blocked a river.

More than 427 acres of crops were damaged and 34,000 houses destroyed in Zheijang

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Before landfall, China's National Meteorological Center issued a red typhoon alert -- the highest level -- on Friday.

Earlier, Lekima passed by the southern Ryukyu Islands of Japan, which include Okinawa.

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