China – Deadly Floods and Mudslides in Sichuan

Heavy rain and flooding continues to affect wide areas of China, in particular southern and central provinces. Over 8 million people have been affected by floods in the country since late May.

Local authorities in Sichuan Province, China, report that 1 person was killed and at least 3 remain missing after heavy rainfall from 16 June, 2020. Heavy rain has damaged homes, roads and crops in the province.

More than 20,000 people were evacuated in Danba county on 17 June. Heavy rain in the area triggered mudslides and debris flow that trapped at least 14 people who were later rescued. A search was under way for people still missing after the disaster. Media said the mudslide had created a barrier lake that threatens more than a dozen villages downstream. A small local power station was destroyed, along with several houses.

China’s National Meteorological Center (NMC) reported that Xichang in Sichuan recorded 144.3 mm of rain to 18 June. Authorities warn that the Xiaojin river in Aba Tibetan and Qiang Autonomous Prefecture, Sichuan Province was 40 cm above warning levels as of 17 June. On 18 June, the Dadu river at Luding in Ganzi was 14cm above warning levels.

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8.5 Million Affected by Floods in South and Central China

Wide areas of southern and central China have seen torrential rainfall and flooding that began in late May and continued to worsen during early June. By 10 June over 2 million people had been affected.

According to media reports quoting China’s Ministry of Emergency Management, over 60 people have died as a result, with 8.5 million people in 24 provincial regions now affected. A total of 500,000 people have been displaced from their homes. Furthermore, flooding has caused direct economic losses of almost $3 billion across.

Among the worst hit provinces is Hunan, where, as of 17 June, more than 1.38 million people had been affected since late May. A many as 53,000 people have evacuated their homes. A total of 1,605 houses have collapsed in the rains, which also damaged more than 140,000 hectares of crops. Flooding recently destroyed a 400 year old bridge in Zhangjiajie, a city in the northwest of Hunan province.

In Guizhou Province, authorities have activated a level-IV emergency response after rainstorms triggered heavy floods. As of 08 June, the floods had affected about 438,000 residents, leaving at least 10 people dead and 14 missing. About 100 houses collapsed while over 8,000 houses were damaged.

More heavy rainfall has fallen recently in South West China. Fangcheng in Guangxi recorded 319.8 mm of rain in 24 hours to 16 June.