In September, 1983, a Cypriot freighter called ‘City of Lobito’ beached on Cheung Chau island after being washed ashore by Typhoon Ellen. The 6000-tonne cargo ship narrowly avoided smashing into newly built beachside apartments (by just 30 metres).
Islanders took care of the 21 Filipino crew members until they were repatriated. The shipping company went bankrupt.
Hong Kong experienced extensive damage with 22 killed or reported missing, 1,600 people made homeless and 277 injured during Ellen. Winds gusted to 134 knots (248 km/h) at Stanley and lasted for 5 hours around Cheung Chau. 22 ships ran aground in the harbor whilst rainfall totaled 231.8 millimetres (9.13 in).
Some 80,000 households in Kowloon and the New Territories suffered power failure during the T-10 typhoon.
There were 150 reports of flooding and 250 reports of roads being blocked by fallen trees, collapsed scaffolding, sign-boards and other debris.
The second tornado ever recorded in Hong Kong, and the first during a typhoon passage, occurred during Ellen.
It was Hong Kong’s worst typhoon since Typhoon Hope of 1979.
Insurance claims totalled HK$300million, however – there was some relief. Ellen filled HK’s reservoirs, filling High Island Reservoir for the first time and 11 others around the territory.
For more historical entries on Hong Wrong, click here. Photographic favourites include…
- 1000+ Before and After Pictures of Old Hong Kong
- A Brief Visual History of Yau Ma Tei Theatre
- A Brief Visual History of Kowloon Walled City
- A Brief Visual History of the Tsim Sha Tsui Clock Tower
- A Brief Visual History of HK’s Old Airport, Kai Tak
- A Brief Visual History of the Hong Kong Skyline
- Mainland Refugees Fleeing Famine Rejected by HK
- Cool Vintage Hong Kong Tourism Posters
- Pictures of Hong Kong in 1972
- Newly Unearthed Photos of 1950s Hong Kong
- More Vintage Photos of Old Hong Kong
- The 1967 Hong Kong Riots
- Unseen Royal Geographic Photos
- The ‘Great Chinese Takeaway’ – the 1997 Handover
- Rare Shots from Inside the Old Kowloon Walled City