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One dead, two injured as rains continue to hammer Taiwan

Full day of torrential rain expected in East Taiwan and Pingtung

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A truck driver died when his vehicle slipped off an embankment in Gongliao, New Taipei City.
Landslide in Xizhi, New Taipei City.

A truck driver died when his vehicle slipped off an embankment in Gongliao, New Taipei City. (CNA photo)

Landslide in Xizhi, New Taipei City. (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – One person was reported dead and two injured as rains in the wake of Tropical Storm Khanun continued to hammer Taiwan for a third day Sunday.

While the storm was moving away in the direction of Hainan and Vietnam, torrential rain was still expected to hit at least nine counties and cities, while rail traffic between Taimali (太麻里) and Zhiben (知本) in Taitung County was suspended and several international flights, including some to and from Hong Kong, were canceled.

The casualty was a truck driver who crashed with his vehicle down an embankment in Gongliao (貢寮), New Taipei City, possibly because of slippery road conditions due to the rain, the Chinese-language Apple Daily reported.

The Central Weather Bureau said the eastern side of Taiwan and Pingtung County at the island’s southern tip should expect a full day with long periods of heavy torrential rain Sunday, while in the north and center, there would still be considerable amounts of rain during the morning, but the precipitation would gradually weaken during the afternoon and low-lying areas could expect the rain to stop by evening.

People were advised to avoid mountainous areas, as the rain was likely to loosen up the top soil, making landslides, mudslides and falling rocks a possibility, the weather bureau said.

It would take until Monday before the weather showed any signs of stabilization and temperatures rose again, according to forecasters.

As to the traffic situation, rail traffic between the popular tourist destinations of Taimali and Zhiben was cut off after landslides hit a 50-meter stretch of the railway tracks before 8 a.m. Sunday, the Central News Agency reported.

At around the same time, a similar incident occurred on the Pingxi (平溪) line in New Taipei City, making rail service there impossible as well.