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HK logs 3.3k COVID-19 cases

The Centre for Health Protection today said it is investigating 3,362 additional locally acquired COVID-19 cases, of which 493 were identified through nucleic acid tests and 2,869 via rapid antigen tests.   Separately, 118 imported cases were detected.   Furthermore, seven residential care homes for the elderly and one for disabled people logged nine cases involving their residents.   The Hospital Authority reported that 33 patients passed away in public hospitals. According to a preliminary analysis, the cause of death for 13 patients was related to COVID-19, while that of the remaining 20 patients was unrelated.   It also registered six more critical cases, bringing the number of patients in critical condition to 99.   As there were positive sewage test results with relatively high viral loads in several areas of Tuen Mun, Yuen Long and Kowloon City districts, the respective district offices will distribute COVID-19 rapid test kits to relevant residents as well as cleaning

HKO forecasts up to 8 typhoons

Hong Kong Observatory (HKO) Director Cheng Cho-ming today said he expects five to eight tropical cyclones to hit Hong Kong this year.   Presenting the weather outlook at a press briefing this afternoon, Mr Cheng noted it is difficult to predict the strength of the tropical cyclones.   “You asked whether these will be severe or not. I think it is difficult to say because it really depends on how close they will come to Hong Kong and how strong they will be. So it really depends on the situation, for example, whether they will intensify or whether they will come very close to Hong Kong.   “So there are a number of factors that will affect whether or not they will severely affect us.”   He added that the HKO forecasts tropical cyclone season to begin in June for Hong Kong.   “The start time of the typhoon season varies from year to year. For this year, we expect it will be June or earlier.   “Of course, for the general public, we need to be aware that we may soon expect some development of tropical cyclones. So everyone should be on the alert and look out for the latest information or warning issued by the Hong Kong Observatory.”   Reviewing last year’s weather, the Observatory noted that Hong Kong had its second warmest year since records began, with an annual mean temperature of 24.4 degrees Celsius.   Mr Cheng also announced that the HKO will incorporate a “Probability of Significant Rain” forecast into its nine-day weather forecast from today.   Starting from the second quarter of this year, the Observatory will provide basic weather information on its website in eight ethnic minority languages. It will launch the “Localised Heavy Rain Advisory” service in the same quarter.   A trial feature “My Weather Observation” on the MyObservatory mobile application will be rolled out to enable the public to report special weather phenomena.   On public education, an interactive e-book titled Tour of Tropical Cyclones will be launched for children.   A thematic webpage for the 100th anniversary of upper-air meteorological measurements by the HKO will also be set up to introduce the history.   Mr Cheng announced at the briefing that the HKO Open Day will be held online this year in view of the latest developments of the COVID-19 epidemic. The related webpage will be launched on March 26.   The Observatory will also host a live-streaming event on the webpage and its Facebook page on March 27, which will feature a sand painting performance to promote messages on climate change and extreme weather.   Results of the 2016-2020 Top 10 Mind-boggling Weather & Climate Events Selection online polling campaign will also be announced at the event.
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