Kaohsiung soaked by overnight storms

A resident wades through floodwaters in Kaohsiung's Gangshan District. / CNA photo Aug. 26, 2020

KAOHSIUNG (CNA) — Overnight storms dropped as much as 200 millimeters of rain on parts of Kaohsiung on Wednesday, prompting local authorities to issue water level alerts for nine locations across the city.

The storms, which began around 2 a.m., featured intermittent downpours and intense lightning activity, and were heaviest in Gangshan, Luzhu, and Dashe districts in the northern half of the city.

As of noon Wednesday, Gangshan had reported a 12-hour rainfall total of 270.5 mm, followed by Luzhu at 257 mm and Dashe at 241 mm, according to the Central Weather Bureau.

In response to the storms, Kaohsiung’s Water Resources Bureau issued water level alerts for nine bridges and other locations along the city’s To-Kwum drainage system, as well as drainage channels flowing into the Houjin and Dianbao rivers.

The bureau also said it had diverted water out of the flood-prone Wujiawei drainage channel in Gangshan District to prevent it from overrunning its banks, while residents of the area reported calf-high flooding in roads along the waterway.

A drainage channel in Tainan on Wednesday (Image courtesy of Tainan City Government)

Aside from Kaohsiung, parts of Tainan were also hit by the storms, with Rende District in the city’s south recording a peak hourly rainfall of 75 mm.

The 24-hour precipitation totals fell short, however, of the 300 mm standard commonly used for determining school and work cancellations, according to Mayor Huang Wei-che (黃偉哲).

Meanwhile, Taiwan’s Central Weather Bureau (CWB) issued extremely heavy rain advisories for Pingtung County, Kaohsiung City, Tainan City, Chiayi City and Chiayi County, which will remain in effect throughout Wednesday.

Extremely heavy rain advisories warn of rain totals exceeding 200 mm in a 24-hour period or 100 mm in a three-hour period.

A heavy rain advisory is also in effect for Yunlin County and Changhua County, meaning that those locations could see over 80 mm of rain within a 24-hour period, the CWB said.

Flooding near Wujiawei drainage channel in Gangshan District, Kaohsiung / CNA photo Aug. 26, 2020