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Seven provinces launch emergency flood response measures

chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2024-06-18 16:01

An aerial drone photo taken on June 18, 2024, shows surging water flow in the section of Rongjiang River in Rong'an county, South China's Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region.

With the rain belt moving northward, extensive areas in southern China are experiencing heavy rainfall, prompting seven provincial-level areas to activate emergency flood response measures, according to China's top flood control and drought relief department.

On Monday, the Office of State Flood Control and Drought Relief Headquarters initiated a Level 4 emergency response for flood control, the least severe level in the warning system, in Guangdong, Hunan and Jiangxi provinces, while maintaining the same level of response in provinces of Fujian, Zhejiang and Guizhou and the Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region. An additional task force was dispatched to Guangdong to assist and guide flood control efforts.

The National Meteorological Center renewed an orange alert for heavy rainfall on Tuesday, the second-highest level in the four-tier warning system.

It anticipates significant rainfall in regions including eastern Guangxi, eastern and southern Hunan, western and northern Jiangxi, southern Anhui, southern Jiangsu, western Zhejiang, and northwestern Fujian from Tuesday to Wednesday, with certain areas experiencing strong convective weather. The maximum hourly precipitation can even exceed 70 millimeters.

Due to continuous heavy rainfall, the water level in the Xijiang River within the Pearl River basin reached the alert level on Saturday. In addition, the Hanjiang River in Guangdong surpassed the alert level on Sunday evening.

The Ministry of Water Resources and the China Meteorological Administration jointly issued the highest red alert for mountain torrents for two consecutive days since Sunday evening, warning a high risk of flash flooding in provinces such as Hunan and Guangxi.

Chen Tao, chief forecaster at the National Meteorological Center, said that as the western Pacific subtropical high gradually strengthens and moves northward since Tuesday, precipitation in Fujian and Guangzhou will significantly decrease.

However, from Tuesday to June 30, the central and lower reaches of the Yangtze River will experience concentrated rainfall. During this period, southern Guizhou, northern Guangxi, northern Hunan, eastern Hubei, northeastern Jiangxi, southern Anhui and southern Jiangsu will receive precipitation of more than 300 mm, which is twice the usual amount for the same period of a typical year, Chen said.

While southern China is enduring heavy rainfall, a heat wave continues to affect northern China, albeit with diminishing intensity.

The Office of State Flood Control and Drought Relief Headquarters said on Monday that the Level 4 drought resistance emergency response in Hebei, Inner Mongolia, Shandong and Henan is being maintained. However, recent rainfall in Shaanxi and Henan may help alleviate the drought conditions.

The National Metrological Center issued a yellow alert for high temperatures on Tuesday, expecting the highest daily temperatures to reach 39 C in certain areas of Liaoning, Hebei, Beijing, Tianjin and Shandong.

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