China / Society

Xinjiang heat wave expected to go on as other regions receive flood warnings

By Zheng Jinran (China Daily) Updated: 2015-07-21 07:51

High temperatures recorded in the Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region for the past week are likely to persist until Sunday, the national meteorological authority said on Monday.

The warning came as the authority said lingering heavy rainfall in southern China could cause flooding.

Since July 13, most of Xinjiang has had dry, hot weather, with average temperatures of more than 40 C, the China Central Meteorological Station said.

"It's the first time the region has experienced such high temperatures for so long this year," said Zhang Tao, the station's chief forecaster.

Temperatures in the Turpan Basin, a tourist attraction in central and eastern Xinjiang, have exceeded 42 C for the past few days, with the land surface temperature reaching 75 C at one point, the local meteorological station said.

The region has issued a red alert for high temperatures - the highest level - to warn people of fire risk and advising them to stay inside.

The high temperatures in Turpan will continue for three days at least, Zhang said.

Li Yudong, who works at a hotel in the regional capital, Urumqi, where daytime temperatures of more than 40 C have been recorded, has asked his female colleagues to take a rest if they find the heat is too much.

"It's normal to have this dry heat in summer, but it's rare to see the hot weather lasting so long," said the 44-year-old native of the city.

Meanwhile, southern, central and eastern regions, which are in the flood season, have seen huge amounts of rainfall in the past week.

Torrential rain was forecast for the southern coastal region, including Guangdong province and the Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region, on Monday and Tuesday. Precipitation may reach 180 millimeters in 24 hours, the Central Meteorological Station said.

It warned people to prepare for flooding and other disasters.

Northern and central provinces, including Hunan, Shanxi and the Inner Mongolia autonomous region, will also see significant rainfall, with hailstorms or wind gusts in certain areas, it said.

Beijing entered its major flooding season on Monday, which will last until Aug 10. Thunderstorms and rain in the capital since July 16 will linger for four more days, the Beijing Meteorological Bureau said.

Average rainfall during the peak flooding season may reach 110 millimeters, more than that last year, the bureau said.

Beijing's flood control authority has been working round the clock to prepare for disasters triggered by the rainfall.

Su Zhou in Urumqi contributed to this story.

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