Flood disasters cause at least 146 dead or missing, affecting 34.81 million people in China
Flood disasters in China this year have affected 34.81 million people, left 146 people dead or missing, destroyed 72,000 houses and caused a direct economic loss of 123 billion yuan ($18.93 billion), according to national flood control and drought relief headquarters on Wednesday.
However, since July 17, heavy rainfall and floods in 21 provinces, including Central China’s Henan, North China’s Shanxi and Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region, have affected 15.4 million people, with 96 people dead or missing, and it has affected 1.614 million people in total, said Zhou Xuewen, a deputy minister of the Ministry of Emergency Management, at a press conference on informing the flood control and relief work.
The flood disaster in Henan has killed 73 people as of press time.
Zhou said that the weather has been unusual this year, with extreme weather events happening frequently.
The spatial and temporal distribution of precipitation is uneven, and the frequency of rainfall in many places is on record.
Since the start of the flood season, the national average precipitation is 314.8 millimeters, 1.1 percent less than the same period in a normal year, but the northeast region, the Yellow-Huaihe river basins and regions near Haihe River have seen more and concentrated precipitation.
The daily precipitation of 154 national meteorological stations reached the monitoring standards for extreme events, with 33 stations breaking the historical record, officials said.
On July 20, the maximum hourly rainfall in Zhengzhou, Henan Province reached 201.9 millimeters, breaking the historical extreme value of hourly rainfall in China, which is 198 millimeters.
Besides, rivers in northern China have caused severe flood, with small- and medium-sized rivers rising rapidly.
Since the start of the flood season, 372 rivers in 26 provinces across the country have experienced floods exceeding the alarm level, of which 96 have exceeded the protection level and 31 others exceeded the historical record.