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Tornado in China's Guangzhou kills 5, ravages over 140 factories; dramatic videos go viral (WATCH)

Guangzhou, China, experienced a destructive tornado on Saturday, resulting in five fatalities and extensive damage to over 140 factory buildings. Videos online showed the storm's impact, with debris swirling amid storm clouds.

Tornado in China's Guangzhou leads to casualties ravages over 140 factories; dramatic videos go viral (WATCH)
First Published Apr 28, 2024, 12:05 PM IST

Guangzhou, China, was struck by a devastating tornado on Saturday, resulting in the loss of five lives and significant damage to more than 140 factory buildings, according to state media reports. The tornado, confirmed by the China Meteorological Administration, hit around 3 pm local time in the Baiyun district of Guangzhou, a major manufacturing hub and sprawling metropolis situated near Hong Kong.

Videos shared online depicted a mid-afternoon sky engulfed by storm clouds, with debris swirling high into the air. Official sources from Xinhua News Agency reported that 33 individuals were injured in the disaster, alongside the substantial destruction of 141 factory structures.

The weather station in Liangtian village, approximately 1.7 miles from the tornado's point of origin, recorded a maximum wind gust of 20.6 meters per second around the time of impact, as detailed by Xinhua.

Earlier in the day, city authorities had issued multiple warnings for thunderstorms, rainstorms, hailstorms, and tornadoes across several districts.

This incident comes amidst ongoing challenges in Guangdong province, where unprecedented floods triggered by heavy rainfall have claimed at least four lives and displaced tens of thousands across various cities. Additionally, ten individuals have been reported missing in the wake of these floods.

Further rainfall is forecasted for the province over the next five days, with an increased risk of severe downpours, hail, and tornadoes.

Guangzhou municipal authorities disclosed on Saturday that the city's total monthly rainfall had reached 455.8mm (17.9 inches), marking the highest level for April since records began in 1951.

Additional tornado warnings were issued for different parts of Guangzhou, with unconfirmed reports suggesting that a second tornado may have struck another district later in the afternoon. Notably, the city of Guangzhou recently hosted the Canton Fair, a prominent international exhibition for exports and imports, and was visited by US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen earlier this month as part of an official trip to China.

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