HEAVY rains have triggered floods and landslides in central China leaving thousands stranded, reports children’s charity Plan International.
Rivers in Shaanxi province have risen to dangerous levels, bursting their banks and washing debris into villages, leaving two dead and 58,000 affected.
Crops have been wiped out, as well as power and water supplies damaged in Xixiang County, causing families to flee their homes.
Neighbouring Hanyin County has also suffered extensive damage to infrastructure, with riverbanks, bridges and school buildings swamped.
“The storms lasted more than four hours in the early morning,” recalls Mr Yang Pu, the headmaster of Tai Ping Primary School in Hanyin County. “On that morning, the water level in the school reached 20ins high.”
Aid agencies fear that further rainstorms over the next few days could worsen the floods.
Local government agencies are guiding emergency relief, including the distribution of relief funds to the needy and relocation of the homeless.
Plan is responding to the emergency in Xixiang and Hanyin counties by mobilising a contingency fund and distributing aid.
The charity reports the main need as rebuilding and repairing infrastructure so children can safely return to school after summer holidays.
Over the next few weeks, Plan aid workers in Hanyin County will be helping to repair a damaged bridge which is currently blocking children from reaching the local school.
About 11,000 villagers, including 1,200 children, will benefit from Plan’s work.
For more information on Plan’s work or to make a donation call 0800 526 848 or visit www.plan-uk.org