Emergency in China as heavy floods lashes China; govt blamed for negligence « Khabarhub
Monday, July 15th, 2024

Emergency in China as heavy floods lashes China; govt blamed for negligence



China has witnessed severe floods in 2024, the worst in the past six decades.

This has caused millions to travel to safer places while those entrapped in the water-logged areas were evacuated.

The heavy rainfall that began in southern China gradually spread to other parts.

In eastern China, at least 242,000 people were evacuated after the recent rainstorms brought a large tract of land under water.

As many provinces struggle to cope with the difficulties inflicted by the massive floods, the dam breach in Hunan province triggered a big flood in central China.

To add insult to injury, a tornado ripped through Shandong province, killing a few and disrupting normal lives.

While China has been witnessing extreme weather events in recent years, the latest downpours and floods have created a situation that authorities termed a “wartime” emergency.

Chinese authorities appear helpless as they struggle to rescue affected people and provide aid to them.

They were subjected to severe criticism in 2023 and 2022 when Chinese people suffered due to floods as their homes were submerged and crops damaged.

“I’d like to know, among all the people living in flood storage areas across the country, how many of them know they are living in such areas?” said one Chinese person on the social media platform Weibo.

This year, the Beijing government revised the Emergency Response Law in what is being perceived as an effort to restrict media coverage of natural disasters.

“The stated purpose is to increase accuracy and objectivity of information, but the new law further monopolises state control over information flows,” said Katja Drinhausen, head of the politics and society programme at Berlin-based Mercator Institute for China Studies.

The situation in China is getting worse thanks to the torrential rainfall. People are expressing their anger over the corruption, excess and abuse of power by the Communist Party officials.

Chinese social media users are sharing pictures of bridges, homes and even people being swept away in floods.

There are no confirmed number of deaths due to floods. But media reports suggested the death toll is in double digits in almost every affected province.

They blamed authorities for being negligent as floodgates were opened without warnings.

A Chinese with a pen name Northrop Gundam said, “The floodgates were opened secretly to release water. No matter how many people died, no official would care. So the exact number of people who died in this flood will always remain a mystery.”

The torrential downpour has led to highway collapses, landslides, and building falls.

In April, China’s Ministry of Emergency Management acknowledged that over 5 million people were affected due to heavy rains and other natural disasters.

The situation deteriorated after major rivers in China began flowing above the danger level.

Moreover, a dyke breach in Dongting lake, China’s second-biggest freshwater lake, led to the evacuation of 6,000 people.

Over 242,000 were evacuated from the eastern province of Anhui as over 991,000 people were affected due to the rainstorms and subsequent flooding.

The southern provinces of Guangdong and Jiangxi are among the badly hit.

Over, 54,000 people were evacuated in Guangdong.

Thousands of homes, cropland and roads were damaged while civic facilities became non-functional in Guangdong and other affected provinces. Over 1.56 million in Jiangxi remained affected.

Many Chinese provinces are at risk of mountain torrents now. China’s meteorological and water resources authorities have escalated the issue to the highest level and issued red alerts for mountain torrents and rainstorms in some eastern and southern parts of China.

Similarly, two provinces in the northwest regions have received orange alert.

China Meteorological Administration now has warned of urban flooding, flash floods, landslides, mudslides and other secondary disasters, which pose a higher risk of strong weather disasters.

Severe flood conditions are expected to occur as water levels in the Yangtze and other rivers continue to rise.

Publish Date : 08 July 2024 15:48 PM

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