Typhoon Krosa: We Got Lucky

Photos by MJ Klein

The wind howled like I have never heard it in my life. The windows held, but water seeped in through microscopic cracks in the wall, and seams around the windows. Ominous sounds emanated from various structures in the neighborhood as the high winds exposed shoddy construction methods and materials. Debris flew through the air creating a very real hazard to life and property. Then, almost as suddenly as it began, it was over….

This is our neighbor’s pigeon coop on the morning after. Notice the brown spot to rear of the property (right side of photo). The coop used to sit on that brown spot. It got blown down and over the fence and into the adjoining property, destroying one of the water tanks in the process.

I heard a crash and went up on the roof to see what had happened. I had tied down our picnic tables so I knew they were OK. Nevertheless, one of the tables was actually airborne, held down by the lanyards I had installed to hold down the umbrellas. But the tables weren’t the problem. This ridiculously stupid pigeon coop had blown over and was resting at about a 45 degree angle on the fence separating the next property. Of course, I ran and told the owner, who of course did nothing about it. My offer to help him tie it down with nylon cord was met with indifference as he told me it was already tied down and wouldn’t fly away.

I am just so tired of being right. My wife thinks I’m silly because I always want to inform the neighbors of things happening that I would appreciate knowing. This experience has reinforced the fact that people don’t seem to care about anything, especially danger. My guess is that this guy will be whining about having to pay money to fix his neighbor’s destroyed water tank, which was completely avoidable.

We had lost one of the covers on our own water tanks during the last typhoon. Now they are a matching set. I picked up the cover across the street in the parking lot. The retaining wire on the tank held though (on the right hand tank, visible in the large size photo). The winds were so strong that the force broke the weld on the cover handle and literally tore it off. Let me tell you, when I went up to the roof to check things out, it felt like I was being sandblasted by the rain!

While up on the roof checking things out this morning, I noticed 2 new mountains that I never knew existed since I hadn’t seen them before. The one cool thing about typhoons is that they really clear the air.

But, they trash the streets. Literally.

What else can you do but drag downed branches to the roadside?

This sign post was bent over like a corn stalk in a crop circle. I’m officially impressed!

The mud pattern shows that a respectable volume of water had flowed down this street.

And the sewer system confirms that indeed a large volume of water had been absorbed into the system and was overflowing. In this shot, the water at the top of the photo is going out from the sewer system and not draining into it. The water level is above the grating.

The real estate office lost their sign, which blew over the top of this building and landed behind it, next to our car. The sign then blew all the way down to the end of this street. Incredible as that sounds, the wind took it away like a leaf. I watched with fascination as the sign scaled the fence shown along side this building (easier to see on the large size) The fabric banners below are tattered.

I am inclined to think that maybe I would take stuff like that down, but typhoons are so commonplace in Taiwan that people don’t expect much to happen.

Our otherwise lovely street took a beating.

Most of the trees on this street are permanently malformed by high winds.

Someone had been busy removing all the broken branches and dragging them to this empty lot. Many of the branches have been sawn off.

It takes a strong wind to do this to a tree.

Same pile of debris from the reverse angle. This used to be a short cut to get to Shaohui’s place.

This tree stands in mute testimony to the power of Krosa. It could have been a lot worse….


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  1. hey MJ,

    as usual, you captured the scene wonderfully with your photos…good work.


  2. thanks David. i would urge my readers to check out your post on Krosa too. it seems that we both had a lot of stuff to clean up afterwards!

  3. Hey MJ.

    I put a link to this post as I really enjoyed the pictures. I want my readers to see them as well or have the chance too.

    Hope you don’t mind.

  4. Brunty, i was reading your blog thinking “wow, there is another guy on Taiwan who was in the storm and blogged on it and i don’t know him” and it turns out you were talking about me! haha thanks for the plug – i appreciate that my friend.

    take care!

  5. MJ,

    I don’t think the Taiwanese are indifferent to danger…many of them are indifferent to consequence! What happens if you build shoddily, it gets battered by typhoons! What happens if you have a pigeon coup on the roof tied with string, it falls over and damages property! What happens if you pollute the air, you cock up the environment! Etc. Etc. Etc. It seems that if you care in Taiwan you end up getting punished one way or another.

  6. Anon, i have been saying for years that there are no consequences in Asia. it’s amazing sometimes. so in this case i really wonder what is going to happen. yesterday the neighbor picked up the pieces of the broken coop and moved them back onto his own property. i’m gonna go take a look tomorrow and see what more has been done.

    thanks for your comments!

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