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Tropical Storm Warning Raised in Hong Kong Ahead of Weekend Storm

Typhoon Signal No.3

HONG KONG – Hong Kong’s weather authorities warned residents Friday to prepare for heavy rain and strong winds as a tropical depression edges towards the territory and mainland China’s Guangdong province.

The Hong Kong Observatory said it would raise the Strong Wind Signal No. 3 between 4 p.m. and 6 p.m. as the tropical depression moves north toward the coast of western Guangdong. It is expected to make landfall Friday night or early Saturday morning before moving inland.

The observatory issued the Standby Signal No. 1, the first tropical cyclone warning, at 5:40 p.m. Thursday. It said Hong Kong will likely experience heavy showers and squally thunderstorm winds on Saturday as the storm nears.

“The tropical depression is gradually intensifying and will be closest to Hong Kong tonight,” said Hwok Ka-cheong, a scientific officer at the observatory.

Hwok said the storm currently has maximum sustained winds of around 63 kilometers (39 miles) per hour. While there are no current predictions it will strengthen into a typhoon, he warned residents to prepare for deteriorating weather conditions.

The observatory will consider issuing the Increasing Gale or Storm Signal No. 8 on Friday night, depending on the storm’s proximity and wind strength, Hwok said.

Authorities are warning the public to stay away from the shoreline and be prepared for travel disruptions over the weekend. Heavy rains could also increase the chance of flooding and landslides across the territory.

Hong Kong is frequently struck by tropical cyclones between July and October.