CHINA: Around 21 people have reportedly died as heavy rainfall struck central China’s Hubei province on Friday. The report comes weeks after record floods killed hundreds in a neighboring province.
In recent months, China has been hit by unprecedented rains. According to experts, extreme weather is increasingly common due to global warming.
In Hubei, torrential downpours resulted in power cuts and landslides destroying hundreds of homes. “The rains have forced the evacuation of nearly 6,000 people,” Hubei’s Emergency Management Bureau said.
“Twenty-one people were killed and four others are missing as heavy rain lashed townships from Wednesday,” state broadcaster Xinhua reported Friday.
Social media footage showed families wading in water that had risen to almost hip level carrying essentials in plastic bags in Yicheng. Yicheng has experienced a record 480 millimeters (around 19 inches) of rain on Thursday. Rescuers carried people to safety on bulldozers. Meanwhile, hundreds of firefighters and thousands of police and military have been dispatched to the worst affected areas including Hubei.
Around 100,000 people were evacuated in the southwestern province of Sichuan last weekend as heavy rains caused several landslides.
More than 300 people were killed in central China’s Henan province last month after record downpours dumped a year’s worth of rain on a city in three days.
China’s Meteorological Administration warned that heavy rainfall was likely to continue until next week, with regions along the Yangtze River, including Shanghai, vulnerable to flooding.