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More floods keep nation on alert
( 2003-07-10 09:22) (China Daily)

Officials at the State Flood Control and Drought Relief Headquarters Wednesday urged caution following floods at Hongze Lake in East China's Jiangsu Province and the middle and lower reaches of the Yangtze River.

More than 250 oil wells around Hongze Lake  are submerged in the floodwater in east China's Jiangsu Province. [newsphoto.com.cn]
Latest information from the headquarters showed that the water levels of all major hydraulic observation stations along the river continued to exceed danger levels.

The Huaihe River mainstream flood crest is approaching the Hongze Lake, prompting its water level to keep rising.

As of 8 am yesterday, the water level at Hongze Lake, located at the lower reaches of the flooding Huaihe River, has reached 14.14 metres, 0.64 metres higher than the danger level and 0.06 metres higher than the record in 1991 when Huaihe River also experienced huge floods.

Some 68,000 people living by Hongze Lake are being urgently evacuated in preparation for the diversion of water from Hongze Lake, China's fourth biggest freshwater lake.

Zhang Zhitong, vice-director of the headquarters said another flood diversion area has been prepared, which will be used to contain flood water discharged from Hongze Lake.

Villagers row to return to their flooded house to pick up belongings, on the outskirts of Bengbu in Anhui province, July 8, 2003. [Reuters]

The China Central Meteorological Station yesterday issued a storm warning for the Huaihe River and the middle and lower reaches of the Yangtze River.

The warning, in effect from noon yesterday till noon tomorrow, has been issued in view of the torrential rains and strong winds forecast for the valleys.

The affected areas include the northern part of Hunan Province, the southern and eastern parts of Hubei Province, the southeast of Henan Province in Central China, and most areas of Anhui and Jiangsu provinces in the east.

More than 1.05 million hectares of crop land have been reported to be waterlogged in northern Jiangsu, of which 402,600 hectares seriously affected and 64,400 hectares would give no yields this year.

Nanjing's 600-year-old city wall has collapsed in three places after continuous torrential rain.

More than 7,000 fixed telephone lines had been shut off after sluice gates were opened to divert flood water from the Huaihe River from July 3 in Anhui.

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