China blasts dam to release flood waters

Beijing: China blasted a dam over a river in Anhui province on Sunday to discharge the surging flood waters as torrential rains and floods wreaked havoc in the country, killing over 100 people.

The dam on the Chuhe river, a tributary of the mighty Yangtze River, was destroyed with explosives to ease the flood control pressure in the river basin, state-run CCTV reported.

Water levels on many rivers, including the Yangtze, have been unusually high this year because of torrential rains.

The Three Gorges Dam on the Yangtze last week opened three floodgates as the water level behind the world’s biggest dam rose more than 15 metres above flood level.

Last week, official media reported that over 140 people were killed or missing since June, 37.89 million have been affected and over 2.24 lakh people relocated as China faced flood catastrophe with 433 rivers were on spat.

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On Sunday, China’s national observatory renewed a yellow alert for rainstorms, as incessant downpours would continue to wreak havoc in vast stretches of the country.

From Sunday morning to Monday morning, heavy rains and rainstorms are expected in parts of Tibet, Yunnan, Guizhou and Guangxi, among other regions, the National Meteorological Centre said, warning that some areas of Jilin, Liaoning and Anhui will experience downpours with up to 150 mm of daily rainfall.

Some of these regions will see over 70 mm of hourly precipitation, accompanied by thunderstorms and strong winds, the centre said.

The centre advised local authorities to remain alert for possible flooding, landslides and mudslides, and recommended halting outdoor operations in hazardous areas.

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Also on Sunday, the centre renewed a yellow alert for high temperatures in the country’s southern areas, as well as in Xinjiang, Inner Mongolia and Sichuan.

Parts of Zhejiang, Fujian, Jiangxi, Guangdong, Guangxi, Hainan and Xinjiang will see temperatures range from 37 to 39 degrees Celsius and even exceed 40 degrees Celsius on Sunday.

China has a four-tier colour-coded weather warning system, with red representing the most severe, followed by orange, yellow and blue.

China’s worst floods in recent years were in 1998, when more than 2,000 people died and almost 3 million homes were destroyed, mostly along the Yangtze.

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