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Heavy rain to batter East China
( 2003-07-16 09:05) (China Daily)

Heavy rain is forecast for the flooded areas along the Huaihe River in the next two days, while the drought condition in some parts of the southern and eastern China has continued to expand as the areas were hit by a heat wave.

Heavy to torrential rains will batter most parts of eastern Jiangsu and Anhui provinces, the country's severe flood-stricken areas, and most parts of Central China, experts at the Central Meteorological Station said yesterday.

The localities need to guard against and control floods and geological disasters such as mud flows and landslides, said the station.

The central government allocated another 200 million yuan (US$24 million) in relief funds to flood-hit areas including Anhui, Jiangsu, Hunan, Guangxi and Chongqing, the Ministry of Finance said yesterday.

Heavy rain caused floods and mudslides in Sichuan on Monday. Two people were killed and more were injured in a mudslide during severe rainstorms Monday morning in Kangding County of the Ganzi Tibetan Ethnic Minority Autonomous Prefecture in Sichuan Province.

Local transport and telecommunications facilities were also damaged, said officials with the local rescue team, who rushed to the scene upon receiving the report at 9 am Monday. At press time, rescue work is under way.

The city of Guangyuan in western Sichuan has also been pounded by severe thunderstorms.

Most areas of the Yuanba District, the worst-affected area of the city, have been flooded, with the deepest floodwater at 1.2 metres yesterday.

Local government officials have rushed to the flooded areas to direct rescue work, and more than 30 armed policemen aboard rescue vessels have been dispatched to rescue residents trapped by the flood.

Meanwhile, the Central Meteorological Station also forecast that a prolonged heat wave, with sustained high temperatures of 35 C to 38 C and at times reaching 40 C, ravaged most areas south of the Yangtze River yesterday and the heat will continue today.

East China's Jiangxi Province was hit heavily by a severe drought. More than 200,000 local residents are facing drinking water shortages and more than 110,000 hectares of farmland was affected by drought.

The province has seen little rainfall since the beginning of this month. The most drought affected areas include Ganzhou, Ji'an and Fuzhou.

The areas of Hunan, Jiangxi, Fujian and Zhejiang provinces in central and eastern China will experience temperatures averaging between 39 C and 41 C. And the dry and hot weather will continue for a few days, the latest weather forecast said.

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