China floods: 78 killed, scores missing

China floods: 78 killed, scores missing

No fewer than 78 persons has died in the north and central China flood with scores of others reported missing, officials and state media have said.

 

The flash floods and landslides in Hebei and Henan provinces destroyed thousands of homes and caused widespread damage to crops.

As many as 16 million people across China have been forced from their homes, Reuters news agency reported.

The Chinese authorities have said they will provide funds for flood-hit areas.

Many of the most recent deaths were in the northern Hebei province, where nearly 50,000 homes collapsed and more than eight million people were affected, said the Chinese state news agency Xinhua.

There were also power cuts and major problems with the communications and transport networks, Xinhua said.

In the central province of Henan, 15 people died in thunderstorms and high winds.

About 18,000 houses were damaged and 7.2 million people were forced to leave their homes, Reuters said.

Angry residents have blamed local officials for failing to warn them of the severe weather in advance.

The summer rains have been especially heavy in China this year and the government has said more than 200 people have been killed as a result of the weather.

It has estimated that more than 1.5 million hectares of crops have been damaged and said direct economic losses exceed $3bn (£2.3bn).

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