Relief in full swing to tackle record blizzard
In response to the record blizzard, which disrupted traffic and everyday life in northeast China, local authorities are rushing to ensure power and food supply while repairing damages.
In China's northernmost province of Heilongjiang, 23 local weather stations had logged precipitation of over 10 mm, with the maximum one in Harbin, the provincial capital, reaching 29.5 mm in the blizzard from 8 a.m. on Sunday to 4 p.m. Monday.
According to the provincial meteorological department, the average precipitation in the whole province on Monday reached 15.3 mm, breaking a new record for the same period since 1961.
The observatory said that small to medium snow would continue to fall in Heilongjiang on Thursday. From Friday to Saturday, thawing snow is likely to frost freezing roads and electric wires.
The Harbin Taiping International Airport in the provincial capital cancelled a total of 113 inbound and outbound flights from Monday to Tuesday morning.
According to the China Railway Harbin Group Co., Ltd, the snowstorms in the province have grounded more than 58 trains and forced 21 trains to change schedules. The company has mobilized 379 teams of workers to de-ice rail tracks.
The provincial transport department has also dispatched some 10,000 maintenance personnel to carry out ice-breaking and snow-removal operations in 55 expressway sections, or 20,000 km long, to resume the passage of vehicles.
In a bid to repair nearly 4,000 communication base stations damaged by the snowstorms, the Heilongjiang branch of China Mobile has dispatched over 2,000 personnel and some 1,200 vehicles to make emergency repairs. As of Thursday, most of the base stations have resumed normal operation.
As for supplies of daily necessities, local authorities have reinforced the market supervision to keep prices stable.
"The authority has diverted vegetable stock from other cities to ensure the normal supply in Harbin," said Cao Xinyi, general manager of Hada Agricultural and Sideline Products Company in Harbin.
In preparation for the extreme weather, 233 electricity generation and heating enterprises in Harbin have stored over 19.65 million tonnes of coal to ensure the local power and heating supply does not run out.
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