Record rainfall in Hong Kong caused widespread flash flooding across the financial hub on Friday, forcing many businesses and schools to close, just days after the city was hit by a typhoon.
The deluge began late Thursday evening, with the Hong Kong Observatory (HKO) recording more than 158 millimeters of rain between 11 p.m. and midnight, the highest hourly rainfall since records began in 1884, the government said. in a press release.
The meteorological office issued the highest black rain warning and urged people to stay indoors and find shelter, warning that the rain could cause flash flooding and that residents near rivers should consider dipping. ‘clear out.
Photos and videos on Friday showed parts of the city underwater, with cars struggling on flooded roads and people wading through murky brown floodwaters. Authorities had to rescue some drivers stuck in partially submerged vehicles; Some parking lots were so flooded that the roofs of the cars were barely visible above the water.
Footage shared widely online showed a subway station in the northern Wong Tai Sin district submerged waist-deep in water, with floodwaters gushing down the stairs. Train services to several stops on the same subway line have been suspended “due to flooding in the section near Wong Tai Sin station”, the city’s subway operator said.
While most other metro operations remain open, bus, tram and ferry services have been suspended across the city due to flooding, according to public broadcaster RTHK.
Early Friday morning, the government announced that all schools would also be closed and urged businesses to allow non-essential employees to stay in safe places instead of traveling to their places of work.
The floods come just a week after Hong Kong was hit by its strongest typhoon in five years. Typhoon Saola, originally a super typhoon, weakened to the equivalent of a Category 2 hurricane when it hit Hong Kong, but was still strong enough to knock down trees and cause hundreds of flight cancellations. Eighty-six people were injured by the typhoon, the government said.