Yangtze flood crest arrives at Three Gorges Dam

Updated: 2011-09-21 13:49


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YICHANG - This year's highest flood crest on the Yangtze River, China's longest waterway, arrived at the Three Gorges Dam Wednesday morning, putting the dam's flood control and navigation capacities to the test.

When the flood crest arrived at 8 am, the water inflow into the dam reservoir reached 47,000 cubic meters per second, according to a hydrological report provided by the Yangtze River flood control headquarters.

The dam stored more than half of the inflow and discharged water at 20,000 cubic meters to minimize the impact on the lower reaches, the report said.

As a result, the water level in the dam reservoir climbed to 164 meters at 10 am, more than 2 meters higher than Tuesday, the report said.

It said water traffic was normal in the dam area Wednesday, but maritime authorities had launched 24-hour surveillance on navigation.

Water inflow from the upper reaches slowed after the flood crest arrived, it said.

The Three Gorges Dam, the world's largest water control and hydropower project, is storing water hoping to operate at full-capacity by the end of October, when its water level should reach 175 meters.

Wednesday's flood crest was caused by torrential rain in the upper reaches of the Yangtze River over the past two weeks.

The latest round of floods has battered several provinces including Hubei, Shaanxi and Sichuan.

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