At least 25 people have died after torrential rains caused landslides and flooded a city in central China, with shocking images showing passengers struggling against chest-high water inside a railcar.
As river embankments were breached in record downpours across Henan Province, Chinese President Xi Jinping (習近平) yesterday described the situation as “extremely severe,” with flood control measures entering a “critical stage,” state media reported.
About 200,000 residents were evacuated in Zhengzhou, local government officials said, as soldiers led rescue efforts in the city of more than 10 million people that saw the equivalent of a year’s average rain dumped on it in just three days.
The rainfall in the region was the heaviest since record-keeping began 60 years ago.
Rainstorms submerged Zhengzhou’s metro late on Tuesday, killing 12 people and injuring five, while city officials said that hundreds were rescued from the subway.
Nerve-shredding images shared on social media showed shocked passengers contending with the fast-rising waters inside a car.
Rescuers cut open the roof of the coach to pull people to safety, local media reported.
Others showed dramatic rescues of pedestrians in Zhengzhou from torrents in the streets.
At least four people were killed in nearby Gongyi city, where houses and walls collapsed, Xinhua news agency reported, adding that rainfall had caused multiple landslides.
People outside Zhengzhou made anxious pleas on social media for information as communications to the city went down.
“Is the second floor in danger? My parents live there, but I can’t get through to them on the phone,” one person wrote.
Authorities have issued the highest warning level for Henan Province as floods continue to hammer the region, with landslides blocking many roads, villages evacuated and large areas left without communications.
As the scale of the disaster continued to unspool and the damage ran into tens of millions of dollars, the Chinese army said it had averted the collapse of the stricken Yihetan Dam about an hour from Zhengzhou.
BREAKING RECORDS: Kuo Hsing-chun’s snatch, clean and jerk, and combined lifts were all Olympic records, although well off her combined world record Taiwanese weightlifter Kuo Hsing-chun (郭婞淳) yesterday completed her elusive quest for Olympic gold, clinching Taiwan’s first win at the Tokyo Games as she set Olympic records in the women’s under-59kg weight class. Kuo, who has not lost a major competition in her weight class since the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, where she was hampered by injury and finished third, finally chased down the gold medal that had long remained just out of her grasp. The 27-year-old finished with a combined lift of 236kg — 103kg in the snatch and 133kg in the clean and jerk — 21kg more
NEXT ROUND: About 1.44 million people who have registered online to receive the AstraZeneca vaccine are to get text messages today to book a vaccine appointment Strict border control measures, including a ban on foreign nationals entering or transiting through Taiwan, are to continue, the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) said yesterday, as it reported 10 locally transmitted COVID-19 infections and no deaths. Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center, said five of the cases tested positive during isolation or upon ending it. The sources of infection of eight cases have been identified, one remains unclear and one is under investigation, he said, adding that 87.8 percent of the people infected with COVID-19 since May 11 have been released from isolation. Chen said an
NO ‘ONE CHINA’ LIE: The appropriations act passed the US House of Representatives with a vote of 217-212, but still needs Senate approval and the president’s signature The US House of Representatives on Wednesday passed a foreign assistance spending bill with an amendment forbidding that funds be used to create, procure or display maps depicting Taiwan as part of the People’s Republic of China. The amendment was introduced by five Republican representatives — Tom Tiffany, Steve Chabot, Scott Perry, Kat Cammack and Mike Gallagher — and passed unanimously in a bundle with a dozen other amendments. “This is a common sense measure,” Tiffany said, speaking on the House floor on Wednesday. “As we all know, Taiwan has never been part of communist China. The Taiwanese people elect their
THE HOME TEAM: DPP Legislator Kao Chia-yu said she canceled her booking for an AstraZeneca shot as soon as she heard that the Medigen vaccine was an option President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) yesterday said that she would get inoculated with the COVID-19 vaccine manufactured by Taiwan-based Medigen Vaccine Biologics Corp (高端疫苗). Tsai wrote on Facebook that she had registered for her first vaccine dose using the national online COVID-19 vaccination booking system, which allows people to indicate their preferred vaccine brand and to make an appointment when the shot becomes available. Tsai said that she opted for the Medigen vaccine — one of three now available on the system, along with the AstraZeneca and Moderna vaccines — even though Medigen has yet to deliver any doses or provide a