Death toll jumps to more than 300 in recent China flooding

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Vehicles, some ferrying supplies, arrive in Xinxiang in central China’s Henan province on Sunday, July 25, 2021. Trucks carrying water and food on Sunday streamed into the Chinese city at the center of flooding that killed dozens of people, while soldiers laid sandbags to fill gaps in river dikes that left neighborhoods under water. (AP Photo/Dake Kang)

BEIJING (AP) — More than 300 people died in recent flooding in central China, authorities said Monday, three times the previously announced toll.

The Henan provincial government said 302 people died and 50 remain missing. The vast majority of the victims were in Zhengzhou, the provincial capital, where 292 died and 47 are missing. Ten others died in three other cities, officials said at a news conference.

Record rainfall inundated Zhengzhou on July 20, turning streets into rushing rivers and flooding at least part of a subway line. Video posted online showed vehicles being washed away and desperate people trapped in subway cars as the waters rose. Fourteen people died in the subway flooding.

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The previous death toll, announced Friday, was 99.

Authorities said 189 people were killed by floods and mudslides, 54 in house collapses and 39 in underground areas such as basements and garages and including those on subway Line 5. Six died in a roadway tunnel from which more than 200 vehicles were removed after it was drained, according to Chinese media reports.

The already drenched city of Zhengzhou was hit by 20 centimeters (8 inches) of rain in one hour starting at 4 p.m. Children were trapped in schools, and stranded people stayed in their workplaces overnight.

The rains headed north in the following days, hitting the Henan cities of Hebi, Anyang and Xinxiang. Seven people died and three are missing in Xinxiang, where record rains dropped more than 25 centimeters (9.8 inches) of water in a 19-hour period.

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