Rail and air transport between Henan (central China) severely affected by the heaviest rainfall in 60 years

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Danger signs are posted on a waterlogged road in Zhengzhou, capital of central China’s Henan Province, July 20, 2021.Photo:Xinhua

Several railways and highways crossing central China’s Henan Province were cut due to extreme weather conditions that left 12 people dead, while large numbers of air flights were canceled on Wednesday as record rainfall in across the province swept towns and villages.

Due to the extreme torrential rains and subsequent flooding, a total of 29 sections of 26 highways in Henan are temporarily closed. In addition, eight national highways and eight provincial highways in Henan have been cut, the Ministry of Transportation said on Wednesday.

Several high-speed railways and north-south, east-west normal speed railways, including the roads between Zhengzhou and Luoyang in Henan Province, and the railways connecting Lanzhou and Lianyungang respectively in Gansu Province (north (West China) and Jiangsu Province in eastern China, were significantly damaged by the flooding, according to China Railway.

The country’s rail authorities have taken action, including limiting traffic speed and suspending operations to ensure safety and services. Meanwhile, they organized railway personnel to deliver food and drink to stranded passengers, according to China Railway.

At 11 a.m. on Wednesday, passengers on the K227 train passing through Zhengzhou, capital of Henan, were stranded on the train for about 24 hours, national news website Thepaper reported. He said some passengers said they did not feel well but are allowed to get off the train and also have a mobile signal to connect with family and friends.

Besides a severe impact on land transport, the rare torrential rains also affect air transport to the large manufacturing center. At 9 a.m. on Wednesday, a total of 660 inbound and outbound flights at Zhengzhou Xinzheng International Airport were canceled, accounting for about 70 percent of total flights, according to the VariFlight flight information platform.

China Southern Airlines on Wednesday canceled a total of 157 inbound and outbound flights to the airport, the airline told the Global Times, noting that the company has implemented a series of emergency actions by opening more counters from service and channels for the transfer of passengers and will operate. to ensure the safety of stranded passengers.

On Wednesday morning, the website belonging to the Zhengzhou Metro appeared in black and white. The local government said metro line 5 was forced to stop around 6 p.m. Tuesday as heavy rains flooded the train, killing 12 people.

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