Storms disrupt Beijing flights, authorities warn of flash flooding, landslides

Vehicles are trapped on a flooded street during a heavy rainfall in Beijing July 20, 2016. (File pgoto by Reuters)
Updated 12 August 2017

Storms disrupt Beijing flights, authorities warn of flash flooding, landslides

BEIJING: Thunderstorms lashed Beijing on Saturday, disrupting hundreds of flights at one of the world’s largest airports, while authorities warned that rain and wind could cause landslides in the area where a 7.0-magnitude earthquake struck this week.
Beijing city authorities raised their weather alert level early on Saturday afternoon to “orange” from “yellow,” warning that lightning, hail, wind and as much as 70 mm of rain would hit the city, potentially causing flash floods in mountainous areas.
Beijing Capital International Airport Co. Ltd. <0694.HK urged travelers, in a statement on its website, to check for updates on their flights into and out of the city.
Almost 500 flights were listed as canceled from 9 a.m. until midnight and 182 were delayed at China’s busiest airport, the website showed.
Air China Ltd. said on its Weibo social media account that some 137 of its flights in and out of the capital had been canceled as of 11 a.m. (0300 GMT).
Torrential rain storms are fairly frequent in Beijing in the summer months, often causing long delays at the airport.
Other airports affected by the downpours included Shanghai, Nanjing in Jiangsu province, Hangzhou in Zhejiang along the Yangtze River delta.
The others were in northern regions: Shijiazhuang in Hebei, Taiyuan in Shanxi, Lanzhou in Gansu, Xining in Qinghai and Yinchuan in Ningxia.
In a statement, China’s National Meteorological Center cautioned rescue crews working in Jiuzhaigou, in the southwestern province of Sichuan, to be on alert for landslides and lightning.
Heavy rain was expected across south-eastern China on Saturday, it said.
The extreme weather came after a tornado struck Inner Mongolia on Friday, killing five people, injuring more than 50 and destroying homes in a major city.


Bangladesh train collision kills 15, toll could rise

Updated 2 min 50 sec ago

Bangladesh train collision kills 15, toll could rise

  • Most passengers were asleep at the time of the crash
  • Railway accidents in Bangladesh happen relatively frequently, many at unsupervised crossings, and also because of the poor condition of tracks

DHAKA: Rescuers in Bangladesh were battling on Tuesday to pull passengers from mangled wreckage after a head-on collision of two trains killed at least 15 people and injured more than 40, officials said.
A train heading for the southern port city of Chittagong and one bound for Dhaka collided at around 3 a.m. (2100 GMT) in Brahmanbaria, about 100 km east of the capital, crumpling three compartments of the Chittagong-bound train.
“So far, 15 bodies have been recovered,” district official Hayat Ud Dowlah Khan said by telephone from the accident site, warning that the toll could rise during the rescue, mounted by fire, police, border guard and army officials.
“More than 40 injured people have been admitted in hospitals,” Khan said, adding that some were in critical condition.
Most passengers were asleep at the time of the crash.
“Suddenly there was a big bang. I saw people were screaming,” a passenger of the Dhaka-bound train said in television images from the site.
It was not immediately clear how the two trains came to be on the same track, and the government has ordered an investigation.
“One of the trains might have broken the signal, leading to the tragedy,” one police official, Shayamal Kanti Das, told reporters.
Railway accidents in Bangladesh happen relatively frequently, many at unsupervised crossings, and also because of the poor condition of tracks.