Red alert issued in Wuhan as floodwaters rise

Downstream of the Three Gorges Dam, Wuhan now facing rising floodwaters

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Longwang Temple sightseeing platform flooded. (Weibo photo)

Longwang Temple sightseeing platform flooded. (Weibo photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Authorities in Wuhan on Tuesday (July 7) released the highest level alert for torrential rain as floodwaters continue to rise in the city.

Wuhan, which is where the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic originated, is located at the lower reaches of the Yangtze River and below the Three Gorges Dam, which local authorities have admitted has released floodwater discharges to release the strain on the facility. At 8 a.m. on Tuesday morning, Wuhan's meteorological office issued a red alert for torrential rain.

Red is the severest of China's four-tiered, color-coded weather warning system, followed by orange, yellow, and blue. In addition, the Wuhan section of the Yangtze River is continuing to swell with floodwaters.

Heavy rains on Monday (July 6) led to the flooding of the sightseeing platform at Wuhan's Longwang Temple, reported Xinhua. At 7 a.m. on Tuesday morning, the Changjiang Water Resources Commission (CWRC) also announced that the water at Hankou station had reached the warning level, and people were urged not to venture out due to the possibility of flooding.


China University of Geosciences campus. (Weibo photo)

Wuhan's meteorological office has issued heavy rain warnings for the beleaguered city since Sunday (July 5). When the weather bureau announced a red alert at 8:16 a.m., it added that rainfall in Wuhan's Huangpi District has exceeded 60 millimeters, with more rain expected for at least three more hours and flooding highly likely.

On Monday, floodwaters inundated Wuhan's Wuchang River Beach, partially submerging many trees and sculptures, while the campus of the China University of Geosciences also experienced flooding. At 7 a.m. on Tuesday, the CWRC issued an urgent alert saying that the water level at Hankou Station on the Yangtze River had reached a warning level of 27.3 meters and a flow rate of 52,900 cubic meters per second, signs of disastrous flooding.

Many Chinese netizens noted that Wuhan has had a really bad year so far: first the start of a global pandemic, and now the worst flooding in decades.