Heavy snow has affected 1.21 million people in east China's Anhui Province, causing direct economic loss of 210 million yuan (29 million U.S. dollars), the provincial department of civil affairs said on Sunday.
The snow started to hit the areas of Anqing, Lu'an, Hefei and others on Jan. 12, affecting 1.21 million people and damaging 87,000 hectares of farmland. Total crop failure was 6,700 hectares, according to a department official.
Yuexi County in the capital Hefei saw its biggest ever snowfall with the maximum depth exceeding 50 centimeters. Traffic was blocked, while power supply and telephone lines were cut off temporarily in some towns and villages.
A total of 1,033 houses in the province were toppled by the snow. Initial estimates show the snow has caused direct economic loss of 210 million yuan, including 164 million yuan in the agricultural sector.
A local meteorologist said the snow would continue until Thursday.
(Xinhua News Agency January 21, 2008)