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Typhoon Toll Could Mount

At least 36 people have been killed and 10 others have gone missing since typhoon Dujuan started sweeping across South China's Guangdong Province on Tuesday night.

And more than 120 others were injured by the typhoon, the most serious tropical storm to batter Guangdong Province in 24 years, according to an official from the Guangdong Provincial Flood Prevention Headquarters yesterday.

The direct economic losses caused by the typhoon, the 13th tropical storm to strike the Chinese coastal area this year, have been calculated at more than 2 billion yuan (US$241 million).

The port cities of Shenzhen, Huizhou, Shanwei and Shantou in eastern coastal areas of Guangdong Province have been the hardest hit by the typhoon over the past two days.

In the Shenzhen Special Economic Zone that borders Hong Kong, at least 20 persons were killed and 98 others injured, including 20 seriously. Two people remain missing in the city.

A factory building which was under construction collapsed, claiming 16 lives and injuring 20 others in Bao'an District's Gongming Township in Shenzhen yesterday.

In another development, in Ningshaan County, Shaanxi Province, around 6,000 students at 29 primary and middle schools could not go to school on September 1 for the start of the new school term as the disaster had destroyed classroom buildings.

From early yesterday morning, rain hit flood-stricken areas once again in Shaanxi, with the wet weather due to last until September 7.

The latest statistics showed that by September 1, 67 out of Shaanxi's 108 counties were hit by the disaster with a population of 4.924 million, and 38 were killed and 34 disappeared in the flood and landslide.

(China Daily September 4, 2003)

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