Typhoon Meranti kills at least 16, displaces thousands in southeast China

Three power transmission towers are blown down in Fujian and 1.65 million homes were without power.

China government said on Friday that at least 16 people were killed in China when Typhoon Meranti hit the southeast coast.

Typhoon Meranti had largely dissipated by Friday afternoon, a day after it swept in from the Pacific Ocean. It caused landslide near the Chinese port city of Xiamen in Fujian province.

The weather officials in both China and Taiwan said Meranti was the strongest storm of its kind this year. Xinhua, the state news agency said Meranti was the strongest typhoon to hit that part of China's coast since 1949.

The state media and the government said the typhoon killed seven people in Fujian and three in neighbouring Zhejiang province while 11 other were missing.

The state media showed pictures of flooded streets, fallen trees and crushed cars in Xiamen.

Xinhua reported that three power transmission towers were blown down in the city and 1.65 million homes were without power across Fujian. The utility crews were trying to restore power.

Authorities said dozens of flights and train services were cancelled on Thursday due to the typhoon.

More than 330,000 people, who were forced to flee the storm, were returning to their homes on Friday.

Typhoon Meranti hit Taiwan on Wednesday morning, forcing flights to be cancelled and schools and other institutions to close.

Reports said that one person died and 38 were injured in Taiwan. The Central Weather Bureau of Taiwan marked Meranti as the Category 5 storm.

Hundreds of people have been evacuated and nearly 200,000 households were without power across the island nation, which is preparing for another, Typhoon Malakas that was forecast to bring heavy rain on Saturday.

Typhoons are quite common at this time of the year as they pick up strength while they cross the warm waters of the Pacific. As a result of this, the storms bring fierce winds and rainfall when they hit land.