China opened sluice gates on the rain-swollen Huaihe River at 12:30 p.m. on Friday to divert the rising floodwater to the Qiujiahu flood diversion area.
The area, in Yingshang County of Anhui Province, east China, is the eighth such area to be used this year to alleviate flooding from the Huaihe River, which is experiencing the worst flooding since 1991.
The area covers 38.2 square kilometers, including 2,300 hectares of farmland, from which 33,000 residents have been evacuated. This is the 15th time the area has been used for flood diversion since the founding of the People's Republic of China in 1949.
(Xinhua News Agency July 11, 2003)