BEIJING Torrential rain has killed at least 71
people in floods, house collapses and rockslides across
southern China with more heavy rain predicted for much of this
week, state media said on Monday.
About 643,000 people were evacuated and some 56,000 houses
destroyed and 104,000 damaged, the official Xinhua news agency
said, citing an unnamed official at the Ministry of Civil
"We've got experience of floods, but I've never known a
flood like this," Zhong Shizhan, a resident of Mei county in
Guangdong province, was quoted as saying by the Southern
The National Meteorological Centre forecast heavy rain
south of the Yangtze, China's longest river, and continued
downpours in the south of the country until Thursday.
One official said the rain had stopped in the northeastern
Guangdong city of Meizhou where a local government Web site
showed pictures of people standing waist deep in brown flood
waters and others filling sandbags to keep the waters at bay.
Nearly 9 million people had been affected. Thirteen people
were missing and 3.43 billion yuan ($446.8 million) of damage
A total of 350,000 ha, or 1,350 sq miles, of crops had been
damaged and 57,600 ha had been destroyed.
From Wednesday to Saturday, continuous rain, mudslides and
floods hit the provinces of Hunan, Guangdong, Guangxi, Guizhou,
Jiangxi and Fujian.
China's typhoon season is just getting under way in the
south. Experts last month warned that the Yangtze could flood
badly this year for the first time since 1998 when flooding
killed more than 3,000 people.
Other parts of the country were reeling from intense heat,
with the northeastern province of Jilin seeing temperatures
soar above 40 degrees Celsius (104 Fahrenheit), Xinhua added.
Jilin's Tonyu county recorded temperatures of 41.6 degrees,
the highest in local history, the report said.