Heavy rains affect 18.3 mln, kill 43 along Yangtze River

20:34, July 12, 2010      

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Heavy rain since July 8 has affected 18.3 million people in regions along the Yangtze River, leaving 43 dead and 18 missing, China's flood control authorities said Monday.

The death toll released by the State Flood Control and Drought Relief Headquarters (SFDH) excluded deaths caused by lighting strikes.

A total of 39,000 homes had collapsed, 755,000 people had been evacuated and 974,000 hectares of crops were affected by floods, resulting in direct economic losses of 10.6 billion yuan (1.57 billion U.S. dollars), according to the SFDH.

By 2 p.m. Monday, the major lakes and main streams along the middle and lower reaches of the Yangtze River had been slowly rising, according to the SFDH.

The water level in Jiangxi Province's Poyang Lake remained a centimeter above the warning level, and that of Hunan Province's Dongting Lake was 1.01 meter below the warning level, the SFDH said.

Chen Lei, vice director of the SFDH, on Monday urged local authorities to step up inspections and examinations of dams, reservoirs, hydropower stations and other water facilities to prevent more damage.

Source: Xinhua


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