Many of you have heard news of the typhoon that swept through and engulfed Taiwan this weekend. I would like to give a quick written update, but I think the most interesting part of this post will be the pictures and videos of the storm. Read, look, and watch on!
The Big Picture
Praise the Lord that my sisters and I, all of the other Morrison staff, and all those involved with His Hands Taiwan are safe after brutal Typhoon Fanapi blasted us for the last day and a half. Though this typhoon was large enough to cover the whole of Taiwan, the eye of the storm was supposed to veer to the north thus keeping us from the most powerful part of the storm. Instead, after the typhoon made landfall, it took a turn to the south and, just like last year during Typhoon Morakot, southern Taiwan got the worst of the wind and rain. I’ve heard news accounts that say that Dashe (our town) was one of the worst hit in the storm. One friend said she saw on the news that one of our local 7-11’s (right on the main street in Dashe, about 5 minutes from our homes) was flooded with water as high as the cash register. Many trees limbs or whole trees have snapped, the reservoir near my house overflowed spilling water, sand, and mud onto the bridge that gets me into town (or to school or staff housing), and as the rain pounded at a perpendicular angle to the buildings, our homes and businesses were flooded with water. Dashe township got a record 808 mm (or 2.65 feet or 31.81 inches) of rain in 24 hours (the highest rainfall amount in 50 years in Dashe and the second highest amount of rain of any area of Taiwan during this typhoon); at times the water was coming down at over 100 mm (or around 4 inches) per hour. Kaohsiung County schools announced on Sunday evening that they would be closed on Monday; we Morrison teachers were ecstatic about that since it meant that we would have time to clean up our homes and the school before heading back to work.
Sara, Ashleigh, and I decided to help the nursery workers by taking some of the babies off of their hands during the storm; we were remembering last year’s storm that was supposed to be quick but instead lingered and caused much damage. On Saturday evening when we returned from our staff retreat at the beach (in Kenting) Sara and Ashleigh picked up three babies at the nursery (the twins, Ava & Elijah; and Elliott) and I picked up one (JaiLi). On Saturday evening, the winds picked up, and on Sunday morning, the rain began. For a while, I thought that the storm was not going to be that bad, but then it turned toward us, and things got interesting. I spent the day on Sunday replacing wet towels with dry ones in front of my balconies and under air conditioners on the front of my house. For most of the day, the front of my 12th floor apartment was getting a direct hit from the wind and rain. On my living room balcony, the drain kept getting clogged, so I had to go out about 6 or 7 times to unclog the drains, otherwise the water would have spilled into my living room (like last year!). Each time I went out, I was drenched in a matter of seconds, so by the 5th or 6th time of having to go out, I just put my bathing suit on. It would have been a sight to see had there been any visibility outside during the storm. During the day, I had to move furniture and carpets away from the front of the house, but other than the dishevelment of my apartment and some water on my bedroom carpet, everything was fine. By the evening, the winds had changed, and I was able to sleep without worrying about water flooding my home.
When the winds changed, though, that meant trouble for Sara and Ashleigh at their house. Throughout the day, the staff housing building had major flooding from the roof down both staircases, and many of the residents pitched in to clean that up. By the evening, the water was coming in to Sara’s bedroom and living room. Staff housing also lost power, and then the generator overheated and died. When the girls thought they had the water problem under control, they went to bed. But when Ashleigh checked the living room (maybe because she was up with a baby?) around midnight, there was water from the balcony door all the way out to the front door and hallway. The good news is that she and Sara had already moved all the furniture and the carpet in that room, so not too much was damaged. They did have to spend the next two hours bailing water from the balcony where the drain had gotten clogged so that the space filled up like a bathtub. After they were able to get the drain cleared, not much more water came inside. Electricity finally came back on this morning for them after about 14 hours of being out.
- Praise God that our community of friends and coworkers is all safe and healthy and that we had little damage to our belongings.
- Praise that we had a day off from school to recover from the storm.
- Praise that this storm came in before my dad flies out to Taiwan (he’s leaving in just a few hours).
- Praise God as we are reminded of his POWER and his PROTECTION in moments like these.
- Pray for all those in Taiwan who were injured or lost loved ones during the storm.
- Pray also for those who lost their homes, businesses, or belongings. There are many people who live in mountain or rural villages that do not have substantial housing.
- Pray for God’s continued protection and provision as the clean-up from the storm begins.
My Typhoon Fanapi Video
Sara’s Typhoon Fanapi Video
Links to news articles online: