Rain eases central China drought; causes floods as well

08:28, June 07, 2011      

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Torrential rain has greatly eased the severe drought in central China, it also caused flooding in some regions as well.

Most of the western, central and northern parts of Hunan Province have been battered by moderate to heavy rain since June 2, the provincial meteorological center said Sunday. The Fenghuang County of the province had recorded the largest precipitation of 231.5 mm by Sunday morning.

The rain has reduced the crop acreage suffering from drought by one third to 307,000 hectares and people suffering from drinking water shortage by nearly half to 610,000.

Meanwhile, the heavy rain has caused floods in the prefecture of Xiangxi and cities of Loudi and Huaihua, affecting some 620,000 people and damaging 29,000 hectares of crops.

The floods even forced the emergency evacuation of 21,000 residents in the three regions.

The provincial government has ordered to brace for floods and geological disasters while storing water following the worst drought in 60 years.

Drought in Hunan's neighboring provinces of Jiangxi and Hubei along the Yangtze River, China's largest, were also alleviated as the raining season started.

The provincial meteorological center in Jiangxi forecast the torrential rain to last till June 12.

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