By Faith Eherts, AccuWeather meteorologist
By Eric Leister, AccuWeather meteorologist
July 5,2017, 1:07:48PM,EDT
Frequent rounds of rainfall and heavy storms in southern China have resulted in widespread, deadly flooding early this week, mainly from Guangxi to Zheijiang provinces.
Overall, 56 people have reportedly been killed and 22 remain missing across central and southern China.
The excessive amounts of rainfall have done more than cause rivers to breech their banks. According to China's Ministry of Civil Affairs, hailstorms, landslides and urban flooding have also wrought havoc on over 11 million people throughout the area.
They also reported large-scale evacuations prompted by collapsing levees.
On June 3, China's Finance Ministry responded to this widespread natural disaster by providing 1.8 billion yuan (about $280 million) in emergency relief.
The money will be used to evacuate, relocate, house and feed evacuees, as well as provide funds for improved flood prevention and water conservation infrastructure.
Travel issues have ensued as well, as railways and roads were washed out and airports shut down for hours at a time.
The Xiangjiang River at Changsha reached a record high of 39.51 meters (130 feet) on Monday, breaking the previous record from 1998 when severe flooding occurred.
The flooding has resulted in energy shortage fears after Three Gorges and Gezhouba, two of China's top hydropower plants, closed as much as two-thirds of their capacity to avert flooding further downstream on the Yangtze River, according to Reuters.
Grain shortages are also occurring as barges have been delayed on the Yangtze and Xiangjiang rivers due to the high water levels.
A natural gas pipeline in Guizhou owned by China National Petroleum Corp collapsed due to a mudslide, causing an explosion that killed at least eight people and injured another 35, according to Reuters.
Improved weather is expected into Saturday as the heaviest rainfall shifts northward. Another round of locally heavy rainfall is possible from Sunday into early next week.