Hong Kong: Typhoon Hato killed at least 16 and injured more than 120 people on Thursday, after the Typhoon left a trail of destruction across southern China, blacking out Macau’s mega-casinos, devastating the skyscrapers and cancelling hundreds of flights.
While eight died in the gambling hub of Macau, images showed cars underwater and people swimming along streets. The Macau government said two bodies were found in a flooded car park on early Thursday.
However, the detail of the remaining deaths was not immediately known. Footage on the website of Apple Daily showed water flowing into an underground car park, with people wading through neck-deep water littered with debris as one man shouted in panic.
Blacked-out slot machines were seen at the largely empty Wynn Macau casino where there was no air conditioning and a musty atmosphere. The city’s gambling industry generated over 220 billion patacas ($27.29 billion) in revenue in 2016, over half of its annual GDP, as it hosted more than 30 million visitors.
Debris was scattered on roads and a shipping container was washed up on its side in front of a temple.
Streets were lined with trash and shattered glass and residents holding plastic buckets lined up for water from fire hydrants.
“We’ve been going without water and electricity for more than 24 hours. It’s so hot,” May Lee, in her 40s, who was in line for water, told AFP, adding that there was not even water for flushing the toilet.
The word Hato stands for “pigeon” in Japanese — sparked the most severe Typhoon 10 warning, only the third time a storm of this power has pounded the financial hub in the past two decades.
Also Read: Warning for Severe Typhoon Hato in Hong Kong
The city could have suffered losses of HK$8 billion ($1.02 billion), Chinese University of Hong Kong economics professor Terence Chong told AFP, referring to the value of its daily GDP.
In the neighboring southern Chinese province of Guangdong, at least eight people have died, state broadcaster CCTV reported, while around 27,000 were evacuated to temporary shelters, the official Xinhua news agency said. Nearly two million households were briefly without power.
CCTV said four of the mainland deaths had occurred in Zhuhai, three in Zhongshan and one in Jiangmen.
Hato was downgraded to a tropical depression Thursday afternoon as it travelled further into China
Hong Kong and the surrounding region is regularly battered by typhoons between July and October.
The city saw its strongest storm in 1962 when the eye of Typhoon Wanda passed over and gusts of 284 kilometres per hour were recorded. It had killed 130 and left 72,000 people homeless in Hong Kong alone.