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58 dead, 175 missing in China's Sichuan floods


19:29, July 16, 2013

Photo taken on July 16, 2013 from a helicopter shows a road to Caopo Village damaged by mudslide in Wenchuan County, southwest China's Sichuan Province. The People's Liberation Army (PLA) Chengdu Military Area Command has dispatched helicopters to help with relief work in Wenchuan County which has been affected by flooding. An aviation unit dispatched three helicopters with 19 relief workers and 7.5 tonnes of materials in 12 flights to Caopo Township of Wenchuan County, which suffered downpours and mud-rock flows, according to the area command. (Xinhua/Wu Yongbin)

CHENGDU, July 16 (Xinhua) -- A total of 58 people died and 175 others went missing due to rainstorm-triggered floods and a landslide last week in southwest China's Sichuan Province, the local government said Tuesday.

Among the death toll, a major landslide which hit a village in Dujiangyan City Wednesday left 44 people dead and 117 missing according to preliminary investigations, said Tan Xiaoping, a senior official of the Sichuan Flood Prevention and Drought Relief Headquarters.

From July 7 to 12, rainstorms hit 43 counties in Sichuan, with accumulated precipitations of 400 mm to 800 mm in Deyang and Dujiangyan, and 800 mm to 1,151 mm in some areas of the two cities, said Ma Li, deputy head of the Sichuan Provincial Meteorological Administration.

Some 13,400 houses collapsed, 3.47 million people were affected and 300,000 people were relocated because of the downpours.

As of 4 p.m. Monday, the disasters had caused direct economic losses of 20.2 billion yuan (3.28 billion U.S. dollars), said Tan.

The provincial and local governments have earmarked a total of 230 million yuan for disaster relief and sent some 4,000 tents, 30,000 quilts, as well as clothes and food to the affected areas.

The province will see a new round of heavy rainfall in its western areas from Tuesday night to Thursday with precipitation of more than 300 mm, according to the provincial meteorological administration.

The administration has warned that there may be more natural disasters such as landslides, mud-rock flows and floods.

On Tuesday, workers began to remove a dangerous barrier lake formed after a landslide and continuous rainfall, which threatens residents downstream in seven townships in Hanyuan County in Sichuan.

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