BEIJING, July 1 (Xinhua) -- Relentless rain across south China since June 27 has resulted in 14 deaths, 20 missing and damaged swathes of farmland, according to the Ministry of Civil Affairs.
As of 9:00 a.m. Friday, 133 counties in 11 provincial-level regions -- including the provinces of Hubei, Jiangsu and Zhejiang -- had reported floods, landslides and mud flows. Some 120,000 people have been displaced and 40,000 were in need of aid.
More than 3,600 homes collapsed and 19,900 hectares of crops destroyed. Direct economic losses hit 3.14 billion yuan (about 471.6 million U.S. dollars), the ministry said.
The weather authority on Friday again forecast heavy rain and warned of severe floods in parts of Anhui, Hunan, Guizhou and Tibet from Friday night through Saturday.
The National Meteorological Center (NMC) and the Ministry of Water Resources asked local authorities to monitor weather and take all necessary precautions.
The NMC also issued an orange alert for storms. As much as 180mm of rain is expected in parts of Anhui, Jiangsu, Hunan and Guizhou over the next 24 hours.
China has a four-tier color-coded system for severe weather, with red being the most serious, followed by orange, yellow and blue.