Death toll in China’s Henan Province at 302 after flash floods


Aug. 2 (UPI) — More than 300 people are dead and 50 others missing in the aftermath of catastrophic flooding in central China, according to authorities in Henan Province.

The new toll released Monday accounted for deaths in 150 counties and 1,663 villages across the province, authorities said, according to China Central Television.

Provincial authorities also said floods affected about 14.5 million people, and that 933,800 people were evacuated. The floods had an impact on more than 4,210 square miles of territory, completely destroyed 3,616 homes and damaged an additional 89,000 other residences, state media said.

Henan Province also estimates the natural disaster may have caused upward of $17.69 billion in damage across the region.

The highest number of deaths was reported in Zhengzhou, the provincial capital, where 292 people may have died as floodwaters swept through residential areas and roads, and inundated a subway line. According to the official record, 14 passengers died while trapped inside a subway train.

Zhengzhou’s death toll could continue to grow in the aftermath of the disaster.

Hou Hong, the city’s mayor, said Monday that 39 bodies were found in underground car parks, the BBC reported.

Attempts to create a memorial to the victims have been stopped, including a floral tribute at one of the subway stations, according to the report.

Chinese leader Xi Jinping addressed the flooding last week, referring to the “significant loss of life and damage to property.” Xi has not visited sites of disaster in the province.

As Henan recovers China’s National Health Commissioned confirmed it was sending a “working group” to the province after authorities reported a COVID-19 case and 28 “asymptomatic cases” Sunday.

Dozens of people in the province have been hospitalized for COVID-19, Xinhua reported Monday.



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