World-leading aluminium producer China Hongqiao Group Limited reported damage to its facilities in Shandong due to major flooding caused by Typhoon Lekima this weekend.
According to official social media posts, the Hongqiao affiliate Weiqiao Pioneering’s aluminium plant suffered damage when a wall on the east side of the plant was “immediately overwhelmed” by flood waters from the nearby Xiaofu River late Sunday evening. The firm described the water rushing into the plant as being “like a wild horse” and inundating the plant with up to two meters of water.
In an evidently separate incident, the storm caused a Weiqiao subsidiary to cease production in an effort at protecting its smelting operations.
Typhoon Lekima (also known in the Philippines as Typhoon Hanna) has torn across the Philippines, Ryuku Islands, Taiwan, and the People’s Republic of China over the past several days. Originating as a tropical depression in the Philippines on July 30, the storm peaked as a Category 4-equivalent super typhoon.
Lekima made first landfall on the Chinese mainland on August 10 with sustained winds of 115 m.p.h. The storm subsequently weakened and returned seaward to the Yellow Sea, then made a second landfall at Shandong the next day with sustained winds of 50 m.p.h.
As of Monday morning, the storm has caused an estimated US$3.47 billion in damage to the People’s Republic of China, with a death toll of at least 45, with 32 deaths in Zhejiang alone. Beijing issued flood warnings for seven provinces as the typhoon caused deadly landslides, roof damage, and the collapse of a barrier lake.