Shanghai closes major bridges as typhoon sweeps past

August 7th, 2011 - 12:40 pm ICT by IANS  

Shanghai, Aug 7 (IANS) Shanghai Sunday closed a second major sea bridge linking the urban area to an outlying island amid gusts powered by Typhoon Muifa that swept across the region.

The closure of the 16.63-km long Yangtze Bridge to traffic followed a similar action that sealed the 32.5-km long East Sea Bridge Saturday afternoon, traffic authorities said.

Speed limits were imposed on highways and a thorough safety inspection of transportation infrastructure was launched, reported Xinhua.

Typhoon Muifa, moving northward off the east China coast, is expected to land in Shandong Province to the north of Shanghai Monday morning.

The center of the typhoon has passed the sea immediately to the east of Shanghai. Gusts brought by the typhoon tore down billboards and briefly cut off power in at least two residential areas, said Sang Baoliang, an official.

More than 310,000 people in Shanghai had been evacuated, pending the notice from the authorities for them to return home as soon as the impact of the typhoon ends.

Muifa, the ninth typhoon to hit China this year, swirled into the East China Sea around 10 p.m. Friday. High wave warnings were issued along the coastal provinces and ships were forced to moor at bay.

Maritime officials in Zhejiang Province late Saturday reported that 35 fishing boats loaded with 300 people, who were earlier reportedly missing off the coast of Shandong, had been found at Zhejiang’s coast.

The boats were hauled to the bay of Zhoushan and all the people on board were safe, officials said.

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