Rainstorms hit over 5 lakh people in China

Beijing: Heavy rainstorms have affected more than 500,000 people in China's Sichuan province, prompting authorities to upgrade the alert level for nationwide torrential downpours to orange and also raised emergency response.

In Sichuan, the rainstorms have battered the province since July 9, causing waterlogging in cities, inundating farms and fields and cutting off parts of roads, Xinhua news agency quoted local authorities as saying on Sunday.

The extreme weather has led to the evacuation of nearly 110,000 people in seven cities in the province, causing a direct economic loss of 1.77 billion yuan ($274 million).

No deaths or missing people have been reported.

The cities of Dazhou and Guang'an in the province have activated the highest alert for flood prevention.

In its latest update on Sunday, the China Meteorological Administration said heavy rainfall and rainstorms are expected in Beijing, Tianjin as well as parts of Hebei, Shanxi and Shandong provinces until 8 p.m. on Monday.

The southwestern part of Beijing and central part of Hebei are expected to see downpours of up to 280 mm, said the administration, warning that he aforementioned regions will also experience thunderstorms and strong winds.

Local meteorological authorities in Beijing, Tianjin, Shandong and other areas that might be affected were urged to activate or adjust their emergency response levels based on local conditions, while strengthening weather monitoring and forecast.

It was estimated that the heavy rain might cause floods in 14 small and medium-sized rivers, including the tributaries of the Qujiang in Sichuan and Hanjiang in Shaanxi.

The State Flood Control and Drought Relief Headquarters have dispatched three working teams to Shanxi, Hebei and Beijing to assist local authorities.

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