China's Ministry of Justice allocated five million yuan (685,000 U.S. dollars) in relief fund for prisons in areas hit by the heaviest snowfall in five decades, the ministry said on Monday.
The money, allocated to local justice departments of eastern Anhui and Jiangxi, central Hunan, Hubei and Henan, and southwestern Sichuan and Guizhou provinces, was to assist disaster relief and emergency response work of local prisons and labor re-education schools.
Snow plagued China's eastern, central and southern regions for almost three weeks. It has caused death, structural collapse, blackouts, accidents, transport problems and livestock and crop destruction.
Prisons and reeducation and rehabilitation schools in disaster-hit regions also suffered infrastructure damages, blackouts, water cutoff, communication interruption, water pipe frost crack and food shortage, according to the ministry.
In order to ensure prisons' safety and stability, the ministry has sent off seven working units to disaster-affected areas to direct disaster relief.
The ministry ordered prisons and reeducation schools to make emergency response plans, strengthen safety management and remove hidden risks.
It said prisons should "stockpile daily necessities, ensure supply of ample food, medicines and winter-proof goods, and keep a sound order."