Chaos in China

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  • Chaos in China
    11.06.2011 11:59

     

    China has been inundated with heavy rain over the last few days as a stationary frontal system sits over the country with no sign of moving.

    The front moved into the area last week and caused chaos as continuous rainfall produced flash floods that forced thousands to evacuate their homes and killed at least 54 people.

    In Guizhou, one of the hardest hit areas, the floods have killed more than 20 people. Power and water supplies have been disrupted and buildings have collapsed after floodwater eroded river embankments. More than 1000 lightning strikes were recorded in Beijing overnight Tuesday with two people struck and killed by the strikes during that period.

    Up until now, southern and eastern parts of China have been experiencing a drought, and so the rains were felt to be a welcome relief. However, it is unusual for a weather feature to become so stationary and thus the amounts of rain have been uncommon. 98mm of rain fell in Xiushui in just 6 hrs on Thursday with Yueyang receiving 116mm within the same time period. The once dry and cracked land is now practically underwater.

    China’s National Meteorological Centre has warned people that the rain will continue for the foreseeable future and, despite the imminent floods, the public should take advantage of this and start conserving water for future use. They have also warned of possible mudslides.

    It is expected to remain wet across central and south-western China over the coming few days with heavy rain continuing. Even beyond the short timeframe, there are indications that it could remain unsettled with heavy, thundery showers for much longer.

    By: Lindsay Dovey