Snowstorms Kill 21 In China, More Cold Weather Coming This Week
The death toll caused by a flurry of snowstorms that hit central and eastern China last week has risen to 21 just as the nation prepares for another cold front.
Heavy snowfall caused damages to houses, farms and power facilities in Anhui, Jiangsu, Henan, Hubei, Hunan, Shaanxi and Shanxi Provinces along with Chongqing Municipality. More than 3,700 people have been relocated and 14,000 are in need of emergency assistance due to the cold weather. So far around 233,100 hectares of farmland have been affected, with more than 8,100 hectares destroyed, causing direct economic losses of about 5.55 billion yuan.
A second cold front has enveloped the country since last night, where temperatures may fall to as low as -32 degrees celsius up in North-east China. Shanghai will see temperatures fall below zero tonight and lows of minus four on Wednesday night. The weather will be sunny throughout the week here however and will start to warm up a little by the weekend, reaching highs of 15 degrees next Monday.
China's Meteorological Administration has said six provinces around the Yellow, Huai and Yangtze rivers can expect a freezing week ahead. “The second wave of blizzards is not as bad as the first one but it overlaps regions hit by the first wave. Henan and Shaanxi have been repeatedly hit by medium to heavy snowfalls which doubled the disaster,” the administration said, also adding that energy supplies in the regions could be affected. “With the prolonged and widespread cold weather, some areas could register record-breaking low temperatures.” They added.
23 sections of expressway have been closed in Anhui alone due to icy conditions along with 21 tourist areas in Hunan province.