China floods claim 536 lives, 137 people missing

This summer in China became one of the deadliest rainy seasons in a decade, the government said Friday. Flooding and landslides in areas throughout China have killed 536 people and caused 137 people missing over the past two weeks, forcing the evacuation of 1.4 million.

Floods swept 22 provinces and regions across China since late last week, causing an economic loss of 20.352 billion yuan (2.45 billion US dollars), the Office of State Floods Control and Drought Relief Headquarters said, reports Xinhua. More than 44.3761 million people in the country were affected by floods, and more than 31 million hectares of crops were damaged.

The Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, Guangdong Province and Fujian Province suffered the severe losses in the floods, according to the office.

In Wuzhou, a city of Guangxi, the water level of the Xijiang River rose to 26.75 meters when flood crest came at 12:00 a.m. Thursday, 9.45 meters above the warning line.

Continuous torrential rain and ensuing floods in the northern part of Fujian Province forced the Xiamen Railway Station to suspended all its trains after some railway lines via the city were disrupted.

Jia Zhibang, head of the group and Vice-Minister of Civil Affairs, warned local officials to keep alert on possible occurrence of mud and rock flow and landslides.

Xinhua earlier reported, that China Red Cross Society had allocated relief goods worth 8 million yuan (976,000 US dollars) to flood-hit areas. The Red Cross societies of Hong Kong and Macao special administrative regions donated 200,000 yuan (24,400 US dollars) and 100,000 yuan (12,200 US dollars) respectively to the flood-affected areas. Local Red Cross branches have also dispatched about 125 medical teams.

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