Taipei: Super typhoon Nepartak made landfall in Taiwan on Friday, about 15 km south of the eastern city of Taitung, tearing roofs off buildings, flipping cars and dumping rain across the island. So far, one death and about 66 injuries was reported by the Taiwan Central Emergency Operations Center as the typhoon packed winds of up to 240 kph, CNN reported.
The storm hammered the eastern coast of Taiwan with torrential rain and wind for several hours prior to arrival, with photos on social media showing cars destroyed by the onslaught. Some locations have already seen more than 300 mm of rain in just the past 12 hours, while conditions are expected to worsen across central and southern Taiwan for another 12 hours.
The typhoon is expected to have crossed over Taiwan by late Friday and will hit eastern China early Saturday.
At least, 15,224 people have been evacuated from the worst affected areas while an official told CNN two railway systems in the country are out of service. Most flights were cancelled throughout the morning out of Taiwan's Taoyuan International Airport.
So far, power outages have put more than 1,300 homes into darkness. Nepartak is Taiwan's largest super typhoon in about six years and the first for 2016 in the northern hemisphere, after an unusually quiet storm season. Professional stunt rider Dave McKenna, currently in Taiwan, wrote on his Instagram account he could see roofs flying from the seventh floor of his building.
"The streets already look like a bomb has gone off, and this is just the start of it... crazy power. I've been in some back home in Australia but nothing like this," he said.