Canton Tower struck by lightning six times in one hour, Beijiang River faces rare 50-year flood

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Canton Tower struck by lightning six times within one hour

21st April 2024 – (Guangzhou) Guangdong province has been subjected to extensive heavy rainfall, leading to unprecedented weather conditions. On 20th April, between 7pm and 8pm, the iconic Canton Tower was struck by lightning six times, as captured by the sophisticated lightning imaging system. Moreover, the region is bracing for what is expected to be the most significant flood in 50 years along the Beijiang River, part of the Pearl River basin.

According to the official Guangdong Weather account, heavy rainfall typically hampers the discharge of electrical charges within storm clouds. Lightning discharges are more evident after the peak rainfall, possibly due to the dispersal of storm charges during intense downpours.

The adverse weather has affected multiple cities, including Guangzhou, Dongguan, and Zhaoqing. As reported by CCTV on the morning of 21st April 21, thunderstorms covered the entire province, except for Zhanjiang and some eastern parts. The province activated 70 severe rain warnings and 65 thunderstorm alerts. Some rivers have already exceeded warning levels.

Particularly noteworthy is the situation in the Beijiang River valley. The Guangdong Provincial Hydrological Bureau reported a significant rise in water levels across the river system due to the continuous heavy rain. By 2pm on 20th April, 32 hydrological stations across the province reported levels above the alert thresholds.

The situation escalated by 8.45pm on 20th April, when the flow rate at the Shijiao hydrological station on the Beijiang River surged to 12,000 cubic meters per second.