BEIJING: Eleven more people died due to floods and landslides in China as heavy rains and hailstorms wrecked havoc in several provinces since the weekend, taking the death toll in rains during the past few days to 33.
Ministry of civil affairs yesterday said 22 people were killed in rains and floods in China.
Six more persons died in eastern Jiangxi Province, the provincial civil affairs department said. Among them, two drowned in swollen rivers, while four killed by lightening.
Three persons remain missing, 105,700 hectares of crops were ruined, 969 houses destroyed and direct economic losses worth USD 328.5 million have been estimated in the region.
About 199,000 people have been displaced, including about 13,000 from Guxiandu, Poyang County where a river breached its banks last evening.
More than 400 armed police plan to mend a 100-meter gap in the river defenses tomorrow. "We're waiting because the water level remains high," said a police spokesman.
Many villagers were trapped on upper floors. Rescuers distributed food and water to them and took the elderly and children to safe places.
In Zhangjialing village, 70 per cent of homes were flooded in water up to four meters deep. Rescuers are trying to help the villagers as water levels continue to rise.
In Xingwen County, southwestern Sichuan province, five bodies were found at a railway construction site, bringing the death toll from landslides in the county to seven.
Following heavy rain, a landslide occurred around 3 AM on Sunday that destroyed workers' dormitories. Three persons were hospitalised, state-run Xinhua news agency reported.
A spokesperson with the Yangtze River Flood Control and Drought Relief Headquarters said the storms since the weekend had taken tributaries at the upper and middle reaches of the river to their highest level in decades.
Vice Premier Wang Yang called for intensified efforts to prevent flood and mitigate losses from floods on Saturday.
Affected by El Nino, China would face very complicated weather conditions and there is a relatively high possibility of basin-wide floods occurring this year, Wang warned.