A powerful typhoon has made landfall on a group of Chinese islands as it makes its way toward the Chinese metropolis of Shanghai.
Typhoon Muifa made landfall near the port city of Ningbo on China’s east coast at around 8.30 p.m. on Wednesday, according to China’s National Meteorological Centre.
It is predicted to lose strength when it crosses a bay and moves toward the north, but it will still be a typhoon when it approaches Shanghai later Wednesday night.
Heavy rain has already begun to fall in the city of over 20 million people.
With maximum sustained winds of 96mph, the Hong Kong Observatory classified it as a severe typhoon.
According to Chinese media reports, all flights at Shanghai’s two main airports have been canceled, and authorities are evacuating people from construction sites and other high-risk areas.
The typhoon had been expected to make landfall in the afternoon in Zhejiang province, but it shifted slightly eastward, keeping it at sea and putting it on track for a direct hit on Shanghai.
All flights have been cancelled at Ningbo airport in Zhejiang and more than 11,000 fishing boats returned to port in the province, Chinese media said.
The storm’s latest track would take it through Jiangsu and Shandong provinces along China’s north-east coast after hitting Shanghai.