Fresh downpours, floods kill 9 in Gansu

Updated: 2010-08-12 23:49
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LANZHOU -- Floods have left nine people dead and nine others missing in three counties near northwest China's Zhouqu County where at least 1,144 people were killed in rain-triggered mudslides early this week.

Downpours from Wednesday night to Thursday triggered floods in Chengxian, Lixian and Xihe in Longnan City of Gansu Province, the Longnan municipal government said in a statement late Thursday.

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Six were killed, eight remained missing and five were injured in Huangzhu Township of Chengxian while more than 10,000 residents have been evacuated to higher places, it said.

The relocated residents did not have enough food and drinking water and floods prevented them from moving to safer places.

Additional 3,000 people were trapped in a mining area, but there was no immediate danger, it said.

Water level in a major river in Chengxian was rising after ten dredgers washed away by flood blocked three arches of a bridge over the river, threatening the safety of the county seat.

In neighboring county of Lixian, flood killed two, injured six and damaged roads, power and telecommunication facilities.

Floods also killed one and left one missing in Xihe County.

Meanwhile, overnight downpours triggered new floods and mudslides to the mudslide-devastated town of Zhouqu in Longnan's neighboring Gannan Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, leaving three people missing.

Heavier downpours forecast for the next 24 hours were expected to bring 40 to 60 mm of rain, and in some areas, up to 90 mm, according to the provincial meteorological station.

Heavy rains have been forecast through Friday, posing dangers to survivors and rescuers.