Typhoon Krovanh Causes Great Damage in S. China

Typhoon Krovanh, which whipped across south China on Monday, has left thousands homeless and caused great economic losses in the southern provinces of Hainan, Guangdong and the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, officials said Tuesday.

The typhoon brought gales and heavy rainstorms, toppling some 1,700 houses and devastating 16 small reservoirs in Hainan Island, where it first struck on Monday.

Local officials said it was the worst disaster to hit the island province this year, affecting the lives and livelihoods of more than 1.8 million people.

The direct economic losses were estimated at 683 million yuan (about 82 million US dollars) in Hainan, which is dubbed as "China's Hawaii" for its picturesque tropical landscape.

Officials said the provincial government had sent four disaster relief teams to the hardest hit areas to guide the relief and reconstruction work.

Great damage was also reported in Beihai city of Guangxi, where a total of 988 million yuan (about 119 million US dollars) worth of property was swept away by Typhoon Krovanh.

The local observatory in Beihai said it was the biggest typhoon to hit the city since 1954.

To date, at least two people have been confirmed dead from the typhoon in Guangdong, where more than 10,000 houses were destroyed.

China seriously suffers from typhoons every year, with Krovanh,named after a Cambodian tree, being the 12th hurricane to hit the country in 2003.

People's Daily Online --- http://english.peopledaily.com.cn/