Baby rescued from China floods as deadly torrential rains continue

Firefighters are rescuing and transporting people to safety across Henan

Anuj Pant
Friday 23 July 2021 10:36
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3-month-old rescued from rubble in China’s Henan province

Firefighters in China’s Henan province, where at least 33 people have died in floods triggered by torrential rains, have rescued a baby and transported several others to safety.

The Henan fire brigade is seen in a video released by news agency AFP helping several people in the region where vast areas have been submerged in floods as a result of heavy downpour.

One firefighter is seen in the video carrying the baby while carefully wading through flood waters, as several other firefighters helped people climb on to boats in the background.

In the video, a pregnant woman is also seen gingerly climbing down from a bus, helped by another passenger. The firefighters are also seen carrying a person on a stretcher.

It is unclear which areas in Henan the footage is from. Several cities in the province have been affected, with Zhengzhou, the province capital with a population of 12 million, being the worst hit.

In yet another dramatic rescue incident, a three-month-old baby was pulled out alive after 24 hours of being trapped inside rubble at Wangzongdian village, showed a video from state broadcaster CCTV obtained by news agency Reuters.

Heavy rain triggered a landslide that hit led to the collapse of a woman’s home. The woman flung her baby to safety just as the mudslide hit their home but could not make it, said reports cited by the BBC.

At least 12 people died on Tuesday night after being trapped inside Zhengzhou’s subway system that was inundated with floods, reported news agency Associated Press (AP).

An additional eight remain missing in the floods, China’s official Xinhua agency reported.

While there were dryer conditions in Zhengzhou on Thursday, large areas of the city are still flooded. Roads, railways and air transport in the city have been affected.

The storm has now shifted to northeastern Henan, where it has targeted Hebi, Anyang and Xinxiang cities, reported AP, citing CCTV.

Xinxiang has faced more than 25 centimetres of recorded rain in 19 hours between Wednesday night and Thursday afternoon, the heaviest in recorded history.

Public transport in Anyang has been suspended and people have been asked to stay at home, even as several desperate residents sought assistance on social media.

The Chinese military also blasted a dam near the city of Luoyang on Tuesday to release floodwater.

More than 3 million people across Henan have been affected by rain and floods, causing economic losses amounting to 1.2 billion yuan (approximately £135 million).

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