Taiwan Assesses Damage in Typhoon Nepartak's Wake

Taiwan Assesses Damage in Typhoon Nepartak's Wake
Photo Credit:何琦瑜

What you need to know

The Central Mountain Range stopped Nepartak from destroying western Taiwan, but the east coast wasn't so fortunate.

After days bewing into what storm chasers called a near "perfect storm," Typhoon Nepartak hit Taiwan at 5:50 am on July 8, but was weakened by the Central Mountain Range before leaving the nation at 2:30 pm the same day.

Three people have been reported dead and 142 injured. A woman, 71, died after a closet fell on her in Taitung. A soldier drowned at Dongyin Island (東引) and a man drowned near Hualien.

Nepartak caused no major disaster in western Taiwan – only heavy rain and local power outages.

Residents in eastern Taiwan were not as lucky. On July 8, more than 300 emergency medical cases were reported in Taitung. Signs and rooftops were blown away by winds of more than 220 kph. More than 60,000 households were hit by blackouts.

According to the Taitung County Agriculture Department, more than 6,000 hectares of land was destroyed and agricultural losses totalled NT$652 million (US$20 million).

Taitung County Commissioner Justin Huang (黃健庭) put the total losses in infrastructure and private property, including houses, stores, signs and trees, at NT$2 billion.

Lanyu (Orchid Island) and Green Island also saw severe damage. The main highway on Green Island was partially damaged. Transport between Taitung and Lanyu is currently suspended.

Lanyu Township mayor Shiaman Jiaramu said there would be food shortages in the area if transportation to the island is not restored by tomorrow. According to the Taitung County government, transportation will be restored on Wednesday.

Many residents in eastern Taiwan have complained that the train explosives case distracted the government from responding to the typhoon. Facebook events have also been launched to provide support for victims. Nepartak has since crossed the Taiwan Strait and caused severe flooding in China.

First Editor: Olivia Yang
Second Editor: Edward White