CHINA / National

Death toll in Prapiroon rises to 57
Updated: 2006-08-06 08:57

BEIJING - Tropical Storm Prapiroon has killed 57 in south China as of Sunday with 16 people still missing, the official Xinhua news agency said, as the storm forced the relocation of more than 660,000 people.

Over 5 million people were hit by torrential rains after the storm made landfall in the southern province of Guangdong on Thursday evening, triggering landslides, destroying crops and damaging thousands of homes, local officials have said.

Direct economic losses were earlier estimated by local officials at 2.4 billion yuan (US$300 million).

Chinese workers mend river dikes which was damaged by the torrentials brought by the Typhoon Prapiroon in Qingyuan, Guangdong Province on August 5, 2006. [Xinhua]
The latest increase in the fatalities was from Guangxi, where typhoon Prapiroon has weakened into a tropical storm but kept its influence, with another seven deaths in typhoon-triggered disasters, according to the Guangxi regional department of civil affairs.

Accident of flash flood and landslide brought by typhoon in Laibin and Hengxian, both in Guangxi, killed ten.

A flash flood occurred at a private forest farm in Fenghuang Township of Laibin City at 3:20 a.m. on Saturday, sweeping away 13 migrant workers who were working on the farm.

Prapiroon brought along torrential rains and strong winds after it began to influence the city from Friday noon, the department said.

The transient workers, who were all from Hunan Province, built a temporary shelter in the nearby valley for the nights. So when the flash flood occurred, they became victims.

The rescuers saved only six of them and found six corpses. One more migrant worker is still missing.

Three more people were killed and one more injured in a landslide happening in Luming Village of Hengzhou Township, Hengxian County at 7 a.m. on Saturday as one side of a civilian house fell, burying a family of four, said information from the flood control and drought relief headquarters of Hengxian County.

The three killed were all female. And the injured is the only man in the family.

One more death was also reported in Bobai, a county in Yulin of Guangxi, after Typhoon Prapiroon entered Guangxi from Bobai early on Friday, washing it with showers from time to time, said local sources.

Typhoon Prapiroon made landfall at the South China coastal area between Yangxi County and Dianbai County in western Guangdong at 7:20 p.m. Thursday, leaving at least 38 dead and 14 more missing in Guangdong alone.
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