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Continuous rainfall leaves at least 186 dead in China
   2016-07-04 07:33:41    CRIENGLISH.com      Web Editor: Guan Chao

Related: Torrential rains suspend train operations in China

Floods triggered by torrential rain in southern and eastern China have left at least 186 people dead and another 45 missing.

The national flood headquarters is warning that the situation remains grave, with two more rounds of rainstorms forecast to hit southern regions over the next 10 days, while the first typhoon of the year - Nepartak - is expected to hit eastern coastal areas this week.

The extreme weather has displaced close to 1.5 million people and caused more than 50 billion yuan in direct economic losses.

9,000 houses have collapsed and 700,000 hectares of crops have been damaged.

The national meteorological authority has renewed its orange alert, the second most serious, for heavy rain across much of the south today.

Storms will continue to affect the provinces of Hubei, Anhui, Jiangsu, Hunan, Jiangxi, Guizhou and Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region this morning, with precipitation reaching up to 220 millimeters in some areas.

Over the weekend, authorities warned the country is faced with tough flood control and relief tasks.

Liu Zhiyu is with the Ministry of Water Resources.

"Fed by heavy rainfalls, 91 rivers are swelling to, or have surpassed, their warning levels; 28 rivers have swollen over their flood containment levels; five small rivers have met their historic flood levels."

Meteorological authorities said with rainstorms expected to continue in the coming days, the water levels of the middle and lower reaches of the Yangtze River, Taihu Lake, Dongting Lake and Poyang Lake are likely to surpass their warning levels.

The Yangtze has seen 16 rounds of heavy rainfall since the middle of March and levels of 43 rivers along its course have surpassed the safe limit.

The water level on Dongting Lake is about a meter higher than in previous years, while the level of Poyang Lake, China's largest freshwater body, is 2 meters higher than the level in previous years.

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