Torrential rains in China kill 50, 15 missing

July 11th, 2010 - 3:54 pm ICT by ANI  

Beijing, July 11 (ANI): More than 50 people have been killed and 15 are missing following floods, landslides and mud flows that hit parts of central and southern China following days of torrential rains.

According to Xinhua, nearly 17.2 million residents in nine provinces were affected by flood-related disasters and 597,000 people were relocated from July 1 to July 10.

“About 946,500 hectares of farmland were damaged, including 133,900 hectares that were completely destroyed. More than 42,000 houses collapsed and another 121,000 were damaged and estimated that direct economic losses could reach 8.9 billion Yuan (1.3 billion U.S. dollars),” China’s Ministry of Civil Affairs said.

The ministry sent 6,000 tents to the hardest-hit Hubei Province in central China and Chongqing Municipality in southwest China on Saturday.

In June, torrential rains had resulted in 260 deaths and left 211 missing in 11 southern provinces.

The latest round of storms began to pound large swaths of central and southern China from July 8.

Meanwhile, the local weather forecast bureau in Hubei, said that storms or thunder storms could hit the province again from July 11 to 13. It warned that rainfall would exceed 300 millimeters in some worst hit areas, which is likely to trigger another round of heavy floods.

The Three Gorges Dam, which is in the middle reach of the Yangtze River in Hubei, released water for the first time this year on Saturday.

“The flood from the upper stream reaching the dam was measured at 36,000 cubic meters of water per second and could increase to 39,000 cubic meters per second by Sunday,” dam officials said. (ANI)

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