Wild Night During Typhoon Wipha

Photos by MJ Klein

People are normally on edge during a storm such as typhoon Wipha, because anything can happen at any time.  So naturally, when Hui-chen and I heard the sirens from multiple emergency vehicles approach and stop on the next block, we were concerned about what was going on.


Hukou firemen cut a hole in a rolldown security door using an abrasive wheel cutting tool.

I shot this photo using a 300mm lens from our apartment on the next street over, at night.  What I want you to notice is the sparks flying.  The firemen used an abrasive wheel to cut a hole in the rolldown door at one of the Thai places I frequent (not Shao-hui’s).


I few minutes later I walked over in the pouring rain and snapped a couple more photos of the action.  There were quite a number of both male and female fire/rescue personnel on site, as well as local police.  I didn’t dare interrupt them to ask what was going on.


This morning I saw the hole that was cut in the door.


The firemen cut a hole just big enough for one person to fit through so someone could go inside and raise the rollup door for the others.  Notice the bent piece at the top of the door.  The owners of the store couldn’t get the door up because this bent piece stuck out too far.

We talked with the boss lady this morning and asked what happened.  Since the storm was getting worse and her husband’s mother wasn’t feeling well, they closed up their store/restaurant early and went to see her.  Apparently the boss lady had left a pot on a gas burner and forgot to turn the gas off before she left.  The heat was very low so it took several hours to boil off whatever was in the pot and then it began to smolder.  Thanks to the quick actions of their neighbors, an open flame fire never developed and there was no smoke damage.  The only evidence of last night is the cut door and a slight burnt cooking odor.

Ah, but life goes quickly back to normal in Taiwan.  As Hui-chen and I were on the freeway this morning, we saw the Taiwan Air Force doing some practice formations.

Apparently they are getting ready for next month’s activities.

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7 comments

  1. Good photos! Looks like you had a bit of fun. The storm wasn’t quite as intense as I thought it would be. I can count on one hand the times I have seen firemen in action here in Taipei. In three years I can’t recall a serious fire…odd.

  2. p.s. I am gonna put a link to your site on mine…I enjoy your photos/posts and I am sure my readers will too.

    -david

  3. thanks David. i read what happened to you with the water kiling your DSL service. your story made for a good example of what can happen during a storm like that.

  4. I’m able to read all your old posts but not your latest one. Hope you get your feed back soon!

  5. wow! that is wild! it’s a bit upsetting to see since we’ve actually been in that store but we are glad nobody got hurt and it did not escalate to a big fire.

  6. Andres, so true. i went over there to make sure (no other way to put it) that the fire/rescue weren’t taking bodies out of the building. that would have made me very upset. except for the door itself, there was no harm done, really.

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