Victoria Harbour, Hong Kong. Photo: HK Observatory

The Hong Kong Observatory says it will consider around midnight whether to issue typhoon signal No 8, indicating gale or storm-force winds, depending on the movement of Typhoon Hato.

The Observatory issued the No 3 (strong wind) signal at 6:20pm on Tuesday as the storm approached Hong Kong.

According to the present forecast track, Hato is expected to be closest to Hong Kong on Wednesday morning and may pass within 100 kilometers south of the city.

The senior scientific officer at the Observatory, Queenie Lam, said the storm should be considered a significant threat to the city and people should guard against severe flooding.

The public were warned to stay away from the shorelines because of rough seas and swells.

Meanwhile, Cathay Pacific and Hong Kong Airlines announced that most of their daytime flights on Wednesday had been canceled, while TurboJET ferry services from Hong Kong International Airport to Macau’s Outer Harbor Terminal had also been suspended, Radio Television Hong Kong reported.

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