Typhoon Morakot has not even hit China yet but its devastating power has ripped into Taiwan and left the mainland fearing the worst.
The south of the island has been hit by the worst flooding in half a century with 180 kilometre per hour winds and lashing rain complicating rescue efforts for the hundreds of stranded people. The death toll of three confirmed victims is likely to rise as over 30 people are missing although it appears the disaster of 1959 which left over 1500 people either dead or missing has been avoided. Damage will still total around a billion dollars however, with agriculture in the south especially badly hit. The Chinese are taking no chances despite Morakot losing strength as it heads their way. A million people have been evacuated from the highest-risk areas and 35,000 ships have been called back to port to ride out the storm. Mudslides have already cut a number of roads and power lines.