Taiwan Today: Mangkhut upgraded to typhoon, could pose threat to Taiwan

Mangkhut is packing maximum sustained winds of 126 kph, with gusts of up to 162 kph, according to CWB data.

Mangkhut upgraded to typhoon, could pose threat to Taiwan

A tropical storm that formed over the Pacific was upgraded to Typhoon Mangkhut Sunday afternoon and is expected to intensify with the possibility it could reach Taiwan Saturday, the Central Weather Bureau (CWB) forecast.

Meanwhile, a tropical depression over the Bashi Channel between Taiwan and the Philippines is expected to bring rain to southeastern parts of Taiwan, according to the CWB.

Government prepared for extremely heavy rain

A heavy to extremely heavy rain warning was issued Sunday evening for eight cities and counties around Taiwan as President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) said that the government has completed preparations to minimize the possible effects of the rain.

The Central Weather Bureau issued the warning for KeelungCity, Taipei, New Taipei, Yilan County, Hualien County, Taitung County, Kaohsiung and Pingtung County.

Vegetable wholesale price in Taipei sets year record

In the wake of massive flooding caused by torrential rain in southern Taiwan recently, the average wholesale price of vegetables in Taipei reached NT$42.3 (US$1.37) per kilogram Sunday, the highest this year and a rise of 5 percent from Saturday.

The last time wholesale vegetable prices were this high was during the last week of October 2017, with a peak of NT$44.22 on Oct. 29, mainly because of short supply at the beginning and end of a season.

Vegetable prices in the Taipei wholesale market have been above NT$40 per kilogram since Sept. 5 after heavy rain triggered flooding in southern Taiwan on Aug. 23.

Taiwanese stranded in Hokkaido return home

Taiwanese tourists who became stranded in Hokkaido prefecture, the northernmost of Japan’s main islands, following a magnitude-6.7 earthquake Thursday, have returned to Taiwan, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) said Sunday.

According to data from Taiwan’s Tourism Bureau, 712 tourists in 23 tour groups from Taiwan were forced to delay their return home because of the quake, which reports said resulted in 39fatalities and more than 600 injuries.

Passengers including foreign tourists are crowded at New Chitose Airport which got back normal in Sapporo City, Hokkaido Prefecture on September 7, 2018. The severe earthquake registering 7 on the Japanese seismic scale in Atsuma Town, Iburi district of Hokkaido occurred at a.m. 3 on September 6th. According to the Meteorological Agency, the depth of the epicenter was estimated to be about 37 kilometers, and the indicative magnitude was estimated to be 6.7. 16 people died and 25 people were still missing as of 2 p.m. 7th. ( The Yomiuri Shimbun via AP Images )

Suicides in Taiwan rise for third year in a row

Although suicide has not been among the top 10 leading causes of death in Taiwan since 2010, the number of people dying by suicide has increased over the past three years, according to statistics released Sunday by the Taiwanese Society of Suicidology (TSS).

The number of people who died by suicide in 2017 was 3,871, making it the 11th leading cause of death in Taiwan that year.