Dan­ger of flood­ing

In Hu­nan, rain sub­sides but wa­ter lev­els re­main high

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - FRONT PAGE - By HOU LIQIANG houliqiang@chi­nadaily.com.cn Xin­hua con­trib­uted to this story.

More than 300,000 peo­ple have been work­ing around the clock on lev­ees cov­er­ing 2,000 kilo­me­ters in Hu­nan prov­ince, as ma­jor wa­ter­ways re­main at dangerously high lev­els, de­spite heavy rain­fall hav­ing sub­sided.

The pro­vin­cial wa­ter re­sources au­thor­ity said the level of the Xiang jiang River, a ma­jor tribu­tary of the Yangtze River, has dropped to 39.07 me­ters in Chang­sha, down from a record-high 39.44 me­ters on Sun­day.

Ac­cord­ing to fore­casts, the wa­ter level will re­main above the warn­ing level for three more days in Chang­sha, the pro­vin­cial cap­i­tal, and the neigh­bor­ing cities of Xiang­tan and Zhuzhou.

Wa­ter lev­els in the Yangtze River will re­main dangerously high for even longer. At Chengling ji, a key mon­i­tor­ing sta­tion, the wa­ter is ex­pected to stay above warn­ing level for a week.

The Hu­nan govern­ment has mo­bi­lized 302,700 peo­ple to con­duct flood con­trol work.

Among them are em­ploy­ees from about 300 noo­dle restau­rants in Chang­sha. The team be­gan par­tic­i­pat­ing in flood con­trol work on Satur­day, and started cook­ing noo­dles for those fight­ing floods on Mon­day.

“We have lived in Chang- sha for about 10 years and see the city as our sec­ond home. It’s our re­spon­si­bil­ity to contribute,” noo­dle chef Ma Weis­han told China News Ser­vice.

To fa­cil­i­tate flood con­trol work, 5.5 mil­lion wo­ven bags and 5.5 mil­lion square me­ters of wa­ter­proof cloth strips have been dis­patched to the prov­ince, ac­cord­ing to the State Flood Con­trol and Drought Re­lief Head­quar­ters.

Since Fri­day, heavy rain in south­ern China has killed 56 peo­ple and left another 22 miss­ing in 11 pro­vin­cial re­gions, the Min­istry of Civil Affairs said on Tues­day.

It also said a to­tal of 27,000 houses col­lapsed and 37,000 oth­ers were dam­aged due to floods, land­slides and hail­storms in these re­gions, in­clud­ing Zhe­jiang, An­hui and Jiangxi prov­inces, with di­rect eco­nomic losses es­ti­mated at 25.27 bil­lion yuan ($3.71 bil­lion).

On Mon­day, the cen­tral govern­ment al­lo­cated 1.88 bil­lion yuan to 20 prov­inces for dis­as­ter re­lief.

The min­istry and the China Na­tional Com­mis­sion for Dis­as­ter Re­duc­tion have sent teams and ma­te­ri­als, in­clud­ing 3,300 tents, 24,000 fold­ing beds and 30,000 blan­kets, to as­sist dis­as­ter-hit ar­eas in Zhe­jiang, Jiangxi, Hu­nan and Guizhou prov­inces.

YANG HUAFENG / CHINA NEWS SER­VICE

An area in Chang­sha, cap­i­tal of Hu­nan prov­ince, is flooded on Tues­day as a re­sult of re­cent down­pours.

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