China's emergency management authority warns of complicated natural disaster risks in March
Published: Mar 01, 2024 02:28 PM
Citizens commute in the sleet on February 20, 2024 in Fuyang city, Anhui Province. Photo: VCG

Citizens commute in the sleet on February 20, 2024 in Fuyang city, Anhui Province. Photo: VCG

China's top emergency management authority warned on Friday that the national natural disaster risk situation in March will be quite complex, with many areas in the country facing high risks of floods, temperature drops, geological disasters, sand storms and forest fires.

The risks were evaluated during a recent meeting organized by the office of the national commission for disaster prevention, reduction and relief and the Ministry of Emergency Management (MEM), joined by relevant departments.

The MEM said on its official website that there will be a risk of flooding and hail as many areas including Heilongjiang, Jilin, Liaoning, Anhui and Zhejiang provinces will see an expected increase of 20 to 50 percent in precipitation. Continuous heavy rainfall in some parts of East and Central China may lead to flooding, while severe convective weather may cause hail disasters.

The ministry added that there is a possibility of ice jam as the section of the Yellow River in North China's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region will be ice-free by mid-March, earlier than the average annual ice breakup date on March 25. Some frozen sections of rivers in the Northeast region will also start to thaw.

The MEM also warned of low temperatures, rain, snow, and freezing disaster risks. It is expected that in March, some parts of North and Northwest China will have low temperatures, with the risk of temporary cooling and strong wind disasters. The northeastern region and Southwest China's Xizang Autonomous Region will have more precipitation, with a high risk of low temperatures, rain, snow, and freezing disasters.

Due to factors such as cold air, China's coastal and nearshore areas may experience one catastrophic extratropical storm surge and three or four catastrophic high waves.

In addition, it is expected that in March, there will be a high risk of geological disasters in some areas such as Zhejiang, Fujian, Jiangxi, Hubei, Hunan and Guangxi provinces.

The emergency management authority also highlighted the risk of forest fires, as most provinces in the country have entered the spring fire prevention period. In March, parts of Beijing, Hebei, Shanxi, Jiangsu and other places will be at high risks of forest fires, while some areas of Fujian, Guangdong, Sichuan, Guizhou and Yunnan provinces will be facing extremely dangerous levels of forest fire risk.

Furthermore, the MEM issued warnings about the potential risks of sand and dust storms. It is anticipated that in March, the northern regions will experience a similar or slightly higher number of sand and dust days compared to previous years, with four to five occurrences of sand storms expected. Additionally, the overall intensity of these storms is projected to be similar or slightly more severe than usual for this time of year.

Global Times