Beijing downpour toll rises to 37 (Lead)

July 23rd, 2012 - 1:44 pm ICT by IANS  

Beijing, July 23 (IANS) The toll in Saturday’s torrential rains here has climbed to 37 as more bodies were retrieved, authorities said.

Among the victims, 25 drowned, six were killed in house collapses, one by a lightning strike and five were electrocuted, reported Xinhua.

Twenty-two of the bodies have been identified.

The heaviest rain in six decades lashed the Chinese capital Saturday, with the average precipitation reaching 170 mm while a township in the suburban district of Fangshan recorded 460 mm of rain.

The downpours have submerged some power supply facilities and led to blackouts in parts of the city.

Following the deluge, a sum of 120 million yuan ($19 million) has been allocated to help the cities of Beijing and Tianjin and the neighbouring Hebei province to fight floods.

The fund, allocated by the finance and water resources ministries, will be spent on repairs of flood-damaged water conservancy facilities in Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei, the finance ministry said in a statement on its website.

More than 70,000 people were relocated due to downpours in Hebei.

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