Floods Claim 57 Lives, Displace 1.2 Million Across China

Posted September 20th, 2011 at 1:36 am (UTC-5)
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Chinese authorities say 57 people are dead and 29 are missing in floods that have swept across three provinces.

The Ministry of Civil Affairs said more than 1.2 million people have been evacuated and economic losses are estimated at $2.7 billion in Henan, Shaanxi and Sichuan provinces.

The official Xinhua news agency said the flooding is the worst in 50 years in normally arid Shaanxi, where a landslide outside the capital, Xi'an, killed 17 factory workers.

The agency said Tuesday that torrential rains have swelled the Yangtze River, where water was flowing into the reservoir above the Three Gorges Dam at a rage of 45,000 cubic meters per second. It said the reservoir was 16 meters above the alert level and some water was being released downstream.