Sandstorms strike parts of Inner Mongolia, nearby areas

16:26, April 01, 2010      

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Sandstorms affected around 18 million people throughout parts of the central and eastern Inner Mongolia, northern Hebei province, and northeastern China on March 31 as a result of the Mongolia cyclone, according to the State Forestry Administration. Some areas of Xilin Gol and Chifeng City in Inner Mongolia were also hit by sandstorms.

According to satellite imagery, the sandy weather originated in western Mongolia on the afternoon of March 30, and gained power as it spread quickly eastwards.

On the morning of March 31, parts of Xilin Gol, Chifeng, and Tongliao in central and eastern Inner Mongolia witnessed the sandy weather, and some areas even suffered sandstorms with less than 1 kilometer visibility.

On that afternoon, the sandy weather continued to spread eastwards and southwards, hitting parts of the northern Hebei province, western Liaoning province and western Jilin province.

As of 3 p.m. on March 31, the aforementioned areas were still suffering sandstorms which kept spreading eastwards.

According to statistics, this sandy weather hit about 600,000 square kilometers in central and eastern Inner Mongolia, northern Hebei province and four provinces and regions in northeastern China.

Judging from the satellite imagery and information provided by ground monitoring facilities, the sand and dust storm originated from the western part of Mongolia. It then moved by way of the central and eastern parts of the country where there is a huge source of sand due to wind-erosion, desertification, increasing temperatures and cold air.

After the outbreak of the sandstorms, the Leading Group for Sand and Dust Storm Response under the State Forestry Administration tracked it course.

At the same time, experts advised the general public to stay indoors, stop production and to take good care of seniors and children. The State Forestry Administration also urged emergency response departments at all levels to be on the alert in order to prevent disasters from taking place.

By People's Daily Online

(Editor:赵晨雁)

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