Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Five dead, 33 injured as Tornado hits Southern China

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Five people have died and 33 have been injured in a tornado that struck Guangzhou, in southern China, reported CNN, citing Chinese state media.
Guangzhou, a city of 19 million people in southern China, has been witnessing tornadoes at level-three intensity, two below the highest level of five.
According to the authorities, 141 factory buildings were damaged but no residential houses collapsed, according to the Xinhua news agency.

A weather station in Liangtian Village, Baiyun District, about 1.7 miles from where the tornado hit, registered a maximum wind gust of 20.6 metres per second, according to CNN, citing Xinhua.

As of 10 pm local time, search and rescue operations had ended.

The tornado was followed by multiple days of heavy rains lashing southern China, unleashing deadly floods and threatening to upend the lives of tens of millions of people as rescuers rush to evacuate residents trapped by rising waters.Guangdong province, an economic powerhouse home to 127 million people, has seen widespread flooding that has pushed over 110,000 people to be relocated, state media reported, citing the local government.Earlier this week, state media reported that floods had killed at least four people in Guangdong.

Since April 16, sustained torrential rains have pounded the Pearl River Delta, China’s manufacturing heartland and one of the country’s most populated regions, with four weather stations in Guangdong registering record rainfall for April, reported CNN.

Notably, the Pearl River basin is subject to annual flooding from April to September, but the region has faced more intense rainstorms and severe floods in recent years as scientists warn that the climate crisis will amplify extreme weather, making it deadlier and more frequent.

However, tornadoes do not occur as frequently in China as they do in the US, but they do happen.

A peer-reviewed scientific article from 2015 found that China averages fewer than 100 tornadoes per year and that at least 1,772 people have died from tornadoes in the country in the 50 years since 1961.

Moreover, the China Meteorological Agency has warned about heavy rain and strong storms to be continued until the end of the month, CNN reported.

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