[Update] 25/01/16: 52 people have died as Taiwan experiences some of the coldest weather in living memory.
36 people died in Taipei, New Taipei and Taoyuan, and a further 16 in Kaohsiung, mostly from hypothermia and the onset of cardiovascular diseases.
In Taipei, the temperature fell to 4°C, the lowest level ever detected in the city in 44 years, and may drop further to 3°C early today.
Focus Taiwan reports that the deaths were due to hypothermia and cardiovascular disease as those vulnerable to the cold were caught off guard by the abnormally cold weather.
Twice as many critical cases were brought into the Taipei Medical University Hospital as on a normal day, with most cases reported as sudden cardiac death, stroke and myocardial infarction.
The deaths come as Southern China experiences some of the coldest weather in living memory, with ice and snow gripping a part of the world which seldom sees temperatures in single digits.
In Taiwan, Hong Kong and Guangzhou, pictures of snow and sleet were passed around from phone to phone as stunned residents flocked to scenic locations such as Taipei’s Pinglin district, Mt Yangming and Hong Kong’s Tai Mo Shan.
Snow has fallen across most of the elevated regions of Taiwan, with the cold weather forecast to continue into the coming week.
Guangzhou saw its first snowfall in 60 years, with residents flocking to the streets to play and build snowmen.
Although we have to admit, the snowfall doesn’t appear to have been as impressive as some jubilant netizens would have us believe.
In Hong Kong, local media report that residents flocked to the territory’s highest peak of Tai Mo Shan which last night recorded the lowest temperature since records began.
University student Danny Yip hiked to the highest accessible point of the 957 meter peak to verify whether or not the temperature was really as cold as the forecasters predicted. “Everything was frozen up there, even the roads,” he said.
City dwellers headed to the peak to catch a glimpse of the ice, but many were unprepared for the cold weather, with several people finding themselves stranded and others requiring treatment for hypothermia. Authorities in Hong Kong are now warning people not to attempt to climb Tai Mo Shan for the following reason:
You really can't get a footing on Tai Mo Shan.(Source: Swong Wong)
Posted by Real Hong Kong News on Saturday, 23 January 2016
Snow was also spotted falling at Hong Kong International Airport, although we doubt that the runway will be closing anytime soon.