Water supply for 300,000 in NE China city resumes after 100 hours of disruption

18:57, August 04, 2010      

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Water supply for 300,000 people in a city in northeast China's Jilin Province resumed Wednesday afternoon after being cut for 100 hours.

Water supply in Tonghua City was cut Saturday after a flood damaged pipelines and the water plant.

"Finally," said 71-year-old resident Guan Changren, as he watched water run out from the tap he had just turned on. "Now we can shower and wash our clothes."

In the past four days, the city government organized 150,000 boxes of mineral water for the city's residents to drink and more than 20 fire trucks to supply water for other everyday use.

"We did have water to wash ourselves and flush toilets over the past days," said Sheng Hong, a local resident who lives in the city's Longquan Community.

For those who had no water to flush their toilet, authorities opened toilets at schools, organizations and companies.

The city authorities are inspecting more than 180 public toilets every day to ensure cleanliness.

Rainstorms have pelted Jilin Province since late July, setting record-high precipitation levels in 13 counties of seven cities. The rain-triggered floods have left 74 people dead and 71 others missing.

More than 170,000 residents in the province have been evacuated to 400 safe places, including schools, government offices and welfare organizations, and another 310,000 people have turned to friends or relatives for temporary accommodation.

Some residents have set up make-shift shelters for themselves.

"We made a plastic shelter on the mountain behind my house Saturday, when we were hit by a rainstorm. We can stay here when the heavy rains come," said Bi Jian'an, a villager in Sandaohu Village, Baishan City.

In Changshan Town, Huadian City, three officials have been sacked for failing to discharge floodwaters at the Dahe Reservoir. The decision not to discharge has left more then 40 people dead or missing in downstream villages after the reservoir breached its banks last Wednesday.

The floods have destroyed 677 bridges and damaged 51 water reservoirs in Jilin since July 27.

Direct industrial losses exceed 3 billion yuan (443 million U.S. dollars) after more than 300 companies were forced to halt or reduce production amid the floods and continuous downpours.

Heavy rains pounded parts of north China Wednesday, including Beijing, Hebei, Jilin, Heilongjiang, Liaoning and Inner Mongolia.

In Jilin's Linjiang City, where the temperature dropped to 20 degrees Celsius, many relocated residents were wearing only short-sleeved shirts.

"The government has provided us with food, water, quilts and clothes," said Wu Yuli, a Linjiang City's Sidaogou Town resident evacuated to a school.

Jilin has received 1 million yuan (147,633 U.S. dollars) in donations from the Shanghai Municipal Government and 3 million yuan from the Zhejiang Provincial Government for the rescue and relief work.

Source: Xinhua


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