Home / China / Local News Tools: Save | Print | E-mail | Most Read
Cool Off in the Air-raid Shelter: Summer in Chongqing
Adjust font size:

Chongqing in China's sweltering southwest said it has turned 18 more former air-raid shelters into places where local residents, especially low income earners, can escape the summer heat.

According to Tang Zhiming, director of the Chongqing Municipal Air Defense Shelters Office, this summer a total of 59 air raid shelters will be used as cool-off venues.

"The shelters can accommodate a total of 10,000 people during the summer heat," said Tang.

Only 40 shelters were used for the purpose last year.

"The newly added shelters are all in areas where there are a lot of low-income people. We spent about 500,000 yuan refurbishing the shelters -- putting in tables and benches, tap water and book stands, so that the needy who cannot afford air conditioning at home can spend the summer more comfortably," said Tang.

"Money-making activities will be banned at the refurbished shelters -- we want ordinary people to be able to go there and cool off free of charge," said Tang, who said the general public would supervise the system and should report any violations.

Chongqing, a mountainous city located on the intersection of the upper Yangtze and Jialing River, is renowned for its hot weather.

The teeming municipality has 31 million people, eighty percent of whom live in rural counties. About 6 million people live in Chongqing city proper, including about 800,000 who depend on the minimum living allowance provided by the government. Many of these people have no air conditioning at home.

Chongqing began to open air raid shelters as places where citizens could escape the searing summer heat in 2003.

The city experienced a nightmarish summer last year with a prolonged heat wave and drought. In some parts of the city, there were 25 successive days when the temperature was officially reported to have climbed above 40 degrees.

On Aug. 15 the temperature reached 44.5 degrees Celsius in Qijiang County, the highest temperature since records began to be kept 53 years ago. Some 20,000 people suffered sunstroke.

Already this spring Chongqing's temperatures are higher than normal with the mercury passing 33 degrees Celsius on some days in March.

In the last few days, rain has kept temperatures in the city down to a comfortable 18-26 degrees but the mercury was expected to start rising again on Wednesday.

(Xinhua News Agency June 13, 2007)

Tools: Save | Print | E-mail | Most Read

Related Stories
Hot in the City: Beijing Summer Arrives
Play Hide and Seek with Summer Sunshine
Hot Summer Could Lead to Days off Work in Chongqing
Chongqing: Hot in Here!
SiteMap | About Us | RSS | Newsletter | Feedback
Copyright © China.org.cn. All Rights Reserved     E-mail: webmaster@china.org.cn Tel: 86-10-88828000 京ICP证 040089号