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Typhoon Megi leaves 11 dead, scores stranded in Taiwan


* At least 23 people are listed as missing
* Helicopters evacuate 272 stranded tourists
* Megi is advancing on southern China after triggering mudslides in Taiwan

(CNN) -- The death toll from Typhoon Megi rose to 11 on Saturday as it cut a deadly path into Asia, triggering mudslides and leaving tourists stranded in Taiwan.

At least 23 people on two Chinese tour groups were listed as missing, Taiwan's official Central News Agency reported.

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Helicopters rescued 272 others on Chinese tour groups, authorities said.

Rescuers were searching for the missing and providing food to other stranded tourists trapped on the mountainous region of northeastern Taiwan.

Megi, which killed at least 11 people in the Philippines, is expected to hit southern China on Saturday, according to the Hong Kong Observatory.

On the streets of Hong Kong, there were no signs of the typhoon yet.

"Although it is difficult to predict Megi's exact track, the public should stay alert and attend to their personal safety. They should stay away from the shoreline, avoid unnecessary outdoor activities and ensure drains are not blocked," acting Secretary for Security Lai Tung-kwok said.

As precautions, crews in Hong Kong were deployed to pile sandbags, inspect and trim trees and check drains. Temporary shelters were being opened, and myriad boats were moored.

Megi may be the strongest typhoon to hit China this year, the state-run Xinhua news agency has said.

In southern China, strong gales arrived ahead of Megi. Domestic and international flights have been canceled, and ferry services have been suspended in Guangdong, Fujian and Hainan, state-run China Daily said.

Officials have issued the highest of four warnings, bracing for possible devastation in coastal areas, Xinhua said. The warning allows local officials six hours to evacuate residents, close schools and airports, and recall vessels that are considered at risk.

The typhoon affected an estimated 258,844 Filipinos, leaving thousands homeless, when it hit the island earlier this week.

Resource from: CNN

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