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Fall Flood Puts Huaihe River on High Alert

The flood-prone Huaihe River saw its fifth crest this year as heavy rains continued along the upper reaches of the river, officials said Monday.

The water level between Wangjiaba and Runheji is expected to reach 27.6 meters by 2 p.m. Tuesday, 1.1 meters higher than the warning level, said Anhui provincial flood control headquarters.


A headquarters' spokesman said the high water level threatened most of the dykes in the diversion areas, which were blown up in the summer to ease pressure on the lower reaches.


He said the headquarters had already sent three special teams of flood control experts to key and major areas to supervise and guide flood control work.


All flood control offices at city and county levels had been ordered to closely monitor water levels and a 24-hour report mechanism had been established, he said.


Official figures show the heavy floods along the Huaihe River this summer claimed at least 16 lives and caused 18.17 billion yuan (US$2.2 billion) in direct economic losses in Anhui, Jiangsu and Henan provinces.


Earlier this month, the Chinese government announced an investment of 38 billion yuan (US$4.6 billion) in flood control projects along the Huaihe River in the next five years to better contain the flood-prone river.


(Xinhua News Agency October 13, 2003)

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