China battered by deadly storms

Torrential rains continue after killing 94 people and displacing half a million.

    Floods and landslides have destroyed 49,000 houses and caused
    economic losses of $500m in seven provinces[Reuters]

    Torrential rains continue to batter large swathes of China after killing 94 people and displacing more than half a million in the past week.

     

    Floods and landslides have left at least 25 people missing, ruined crops, destroyed 49,000 houses and caused economic losses of $500m in seven provinces, the state-run People's Daily said on Monday.

     

    Downpours in the central province of Henan and the eastern provinces of Anhui and Jiangsu have left the huge Huai river overflowing at alarming levels, the newspaper said.

     

    More than 326,000 people had been mobilised to check embankments along the river, where water was still rising on Monday and a flood peak was expected on Tuesday, state media said.

     

    Thousands of soldiers have been helping to evacuate residents in the region, where streets of several cities were under water.

     

    Over the weekend, Jiangsu's provincial capital, Nanjing, suffered 258 mm of rain, flooding streets and knocking out power, Xinhua news agency said.

     

    More storms forecast

     

    State television showed pictures of wood-and-brick houses in Sichuan disintegrating within a matter of seconds.

     

    Thousands of soldiers have been helping
    to evacuate residents [Reuters]
    "Some houses were flowing down the river like boats. I saw one quickly collapse into the water after its front was turned around," state television quoted a local resident as saying.

     

    Rainstorms have also wrought havoc in parts of the normally dry province of Shaanxi in the northwest.

     

    More heavy rains are forecast for more than 10 Chinese provinces on Monday, while Sichuan, Anhui and Jiangsu would remain the worst hit, said the National Meteorological Centre.

     

    The authorities have warned that up to three typhoons or tropical storms could hit in July and are expected to bring more damage to the southeast.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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