Chief of local meteorological bureau washed away by extremely heavy rainfall flooding a Henan city
Published: Jul 21, 2021 01:37 AM
Passengers are stranded at Zhengzhou East Railway Station on July 20, 2021 due to the heavy rainfall. Photo: CFP

Passengers are stranded at Zhengzhou East Railway Station in Central China's Henan Province on July 20, 2021 due to the heavy rainfall. Photo: CFP

The chief of the local meteorological bureau in Gongyi, in Central China's Henan Province, was washed away by floods caused by heavy rainfall. Fortunately he was rescued by a passerby. However, the local meteorological services could not be updated for more than 10 hours after communications were shut down by the extreme weather. 

The city of Gongyi was hit by extremely heavy rainfall from 7 pm on Monday to 3 pm on Tuesday with a record precipitation of 609.1 mm. On Tuesday morning, Zhao Jianbiao, chief of the local meteorological bureau, went to the office of the local government, but when he returned, he encountered extremely heavy rainfall and was washed away. He was rescued by local residents in the afternoon. 

The heavy rainfall in the city left one dead, two missing and 3,620 people relocated by Tuesday evening. Local electricity and telecommunication services have also been cut off. As result, the local meteorological bureau could not update the weather condition for more than 10 hours. 

Due to the unprecedented heavy rain, the state flood control and drought relief bureau dispatched a working group to Henan and initiated level III emergency response rescue work. Currently about 849 people have been rescued with 1,500 relocated.

The 32 large and medium-sized reservoirs in Henan exceed the flood limit level and severe regional floods occurred in some river sections. The PLA, Chinese armed police and firefighters have been dispatched for evacuation operations. 

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