Floods kill at least 100 across China

More than 100 people have died in floods and landslides in China where dykes protecting a swollen river in the east, which has already prompted tens of thousands to flee their homes, are in danger of being breached.

Floods kill at least 100 across China
More than 100 people have died in floods and landslides in China where dykes protecting a swollen river in the east, which has already prompted tens of thousands to flee their homes, are in danger of being breached.

Severe flooding has hit about half of China since the start of the summer, killing hundreds in what has become the deadliest rainy season in years. Natural disasters, mostly floods, have killed more than 800 people so far this year.

Fifty-nine have died after rainstorms in mountainous Yunnan province, Xinhua news agency said on Sunday. Rains destroyed more than 4,000 houses and damaged thousands of hectares of crops. A 176-km (110-mile) highway linking Tengchong county in Yunnan and Myanmar had been severed by mud-rock flows.

At least 40 people have died in storms in coastal Shandong province in the east.

The already swollen middle and lower reaches of the Huai river, China's third longest, face a severe test in the east with the water level expected to stay dangerously high for at least another 10 days, Xinhua said.

Heavy rain was forecast to continue to hit large swathes of China through the weekend, including the Huai River basin.

More than 1 million people have been evacuated in Henan, Anhui and Jiangsu provinces from the projected path of floodwaters from the Huai. There have been no reports of deaths.

'The dykes that have soaked in high water level for 19 days will be at an increased risk of breach in the coming 10 days,' Xinhua quoted an official with flood control headquarters in Anhui province as saying.

Rains during the past few days had caused another 133,000 ha (329,000 acres) around the river to be flooded, bringing the total flooded area to 254,000 ha (628,000 acres).

'Currently 182,000 people in Anhui are working to control flooding in the Huai,' Xinhua said.

Four women were killed when a wall collapsed in Zhejiang province in the east on Saturday which local sources blamed on heavy winds and rain.

'Leaders warned local people to be on alert for lightning strikes and rainstorms and companies to ensure safety especially in construction sites,' Xinhua said.

Reuters

Güncelleme Tarihi: 22 Temmuz 2007, 10:27
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