China issues weather warnings as southern provinces brace for severe storms

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Continuous heavy rainfall hit Qingyuan City, Guangdong Province, south China, 20th April, 2024. /CFP

22nd April 2024 – (Beijing) The China Meteorological Administration (CMA) has activated a blue alert for severe convective weather and a yellow alert for intense rainfall, anticipating a series of thunderstorms, strong gales, hail, and heavy downpours across southern China this week.

As of 20th April, Qingyuan City in Guangdong Province has already experienced significant rainfall, signaling the start of what the CMA predicts will be a tumultuous weather period for the region. Despite an expected reduction in the breadth of the rainfall zone, meteorologists forecast that precipitation will persist. Over the next three days, certain areas, particularly in central and southern Guangdong and southeastern Fujian, are likely to face heavy to torrential rain, accompanied by severe convective weather patterns.

The forecast for Monday specifically highlighted the risk of intense rain in parts of southeastern Fujian, central-southern Guangdong, and eastern Guangxi. Areas in southeastern Guangdong are bracing for rainfall amounts ranging from 100 to 160 millimeters. Furthermore, southeastern portions of Guangxi, along with coastal regions of central-southern Guangdong, might experience thunderstorms or hail, with wind speeds potentially exceeding force 11.

Additionally, regions including eastern and southern Fujian, southern Guizhou, and parts of Guangxi and Guangdong are set to witness short bursts of heavy rainfall, with hourly rates between 30 and 50 millimeters, and in some localities, exceeding 70 millimeters.

The recent spate of heavy rains in Guangxi, Guangdong, Hunan, and Jiangxi has already saturated the soil, elevating the risk of natural disasters such as flash floods, debris flows, and landslides, particularly after prolonged or heavy rainfall. Meteorological experts are urging the public to exercise extreme caution. They advise against visiting mountainous regions during this period and recommend that residents stay vigilant to the potential hazards associated with severe convective weather.