image

Japan

Typhoon Trami leaves at least 45 flights between Hong Kong and Japan cancelled or delayed

Hundreds of tourists from city visiting island nation expected to return home as airport operations resume at Osaka’s Kansai International Airport

PUBLISHED : Monday, 01 October, 2018, 12:53pm
UPDATED : Monday, 01 October, 2018, 11:21pm

At least 45 flights between Hong Kong and Japan remained cancelled or delayed in the wake of Typhoon Trami on Monday, although the hundreds of tourists from the city visiting the island nation were expected to trickle back as airport operations resume.

At least two people were killed and more than 150 injured as the super typhoon pummelled Japan’s outlying islands including Okinawa before making landfall over the southern city of Osaka on Sunday night.

Roads were blocked, power supplies knocked out, and bullet train services suspended. More than 1,000 flights across the country were cancelled.

Osaka’s Kansai International Airport – having already suffered extensive damage from Typhoon Jebi in September – shut an access bridge and all runways as a precautionary measure on Sunday. Operations resumed at 6am on Monday after the airport operator deemed conditions safe.

But some 200 flights remained grounded.

On Monday morning, a Hong Kong Airport Authority spokeswoman said four flights arriving from Japan and one departing from the city had stayed cancelled.

Typhoon Trami nears Tokyo after battering western Japan

“As of 4pm, a total of 40 flights [to and from Japan] are also delayed.”

The figure was down from about 60 cancelled or delayed flights to and from Japan on Sunday.

The Hong Kong Travel Industry Council on Sunday night said about 21 tour groups comprising more than 530 tourists were in Honshu, Japan’s largest and most populous island, where major cities such as Osaka, Kyoto, Nagoya, and the capital Tokyo are located.

“With Kansai Airport reopened, we expect them to gradually be able to return to Hong Kong, or, if not, travel to other Japanese airports for transit back to Hong Kong,” council executive director Alice Chan Cheung Lok-yee said.

About 17 tour groups totalling about 500 Hong Kong tourists had been scheduled to depart from the city to Tokyo, Osaka and Nagoya on Monday. Chan said most groups would be able to depart without issue, but a few would probably face delays.

Local immigration officials said they had been in contact with the Hong Kong office of the commissioner of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Chinese consulate in Osaka, and the Travel Industry Council for further information. They added they were providing help to Hongkongers in Japan seeking information on local traffic conditions and returning flights.

With additional reporting by Agence France-Presse