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China Daily Website

Dam bursts in Hunan but no casualties

Updated: 2012-05-27 10:44
( Xinhua)

CHANGSHA - A dam burst Friday evening in the central province of Hunan but no casualties had been reported as scores of villagers downstream had previously been relocated, according to the provincial authorities on Saturday.

The Badoucun reservoir dam burst around 6 pm Friday and water from it had flooded Xintang village of Taojiang county, said the Hunan provincial flood control and drought relief headquarters.

Heavy rain since Tuesday had increased water levels, putting pressure on the dam. The ensuing flood damaged 10 hectares of crops.

The local government has started the emergency response plan to repair the dam.

The Badoucun reservoir was constructed in 1973. It has been listed in the provincial reservoir reinforcement plan, as it was known to have safety risks.

South and Southwest China as well as regions south of the Yangtze River have seen heavy rain, thunderstorms and hailstorms over the last few days.

The dire weather conditions had blocked roads, halted trains and destroyed farmland.

In Southwest China's Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region, continuous downpours had damaged about 165 roads in Lingyun county.

And rain-triggered floods had left 77,000 people facing safety risks there.

In the most affected Yuhong Yao Nationality township, all roads into its 18 villages had all been blocked. And it was difficult to get relief goods to the disaster-hit area, said Huang Fengping, the county party secretary of Yuhong.

Classes of over 100 students in the villages had been suspended, said Tian Xingfu, the principal with the Central School of the township.

"We had to keep all boarding students in the school over the weekend to ensure their safety," said Tian.

"As the tap water was cut off, it's difficult to supply the schools in the township with drinking water. We've had to fetch spring water from the valleys," he said.

Rescuers have been sent to repair the damaged roads. The blocked roads are not expected to reopen for at least a week, said Huang.

In Central China's Hunan province, continuous raintorms have raised the water levels in its major reservoirs.

The total water storage in Hunan's nine major large-scale reservoirs is about 30 percent more than the annual average in the corresponding period, according to the provincial hydrological bureau.

China's meteorological authority forecast that rainfalls and regional rainstorms are to continue battering the nation's southern regions including Yunnan, Fujian, Guangdong and Hainan on Sunday.