Nearly eight inches of rain fell in one hour on the city of Zhengzhou, China, which has been hit with torrential rain for the past few days causing massive flooding. The floods have caused chaos in the city, with roads so flooded cars have been floating and sinking, and people have been trapped in subway cars filled with waist-high water . At least 12 people have died, and the situation is far from over.
The amount of rain Zhengzhou has received in the past few days is close to what it would normally get in an entire year and has been more than the amount of rain that has caused severe flooding in European cities recently.
Videos from Chinese social media have been showing up on Western networks, and reveal some genuinely alarming scenes. In some, people seem incredibly calm, like these people waist-deep in water in a subway car:
That’s an incredible amount of restraint and control being shown by those people there. There are a number of videos showing people in flooded subway cars and the subterranean river-like conditions of the subway system:
Street scenes show cars bobbing in the water like dead fish, the water several feet deep:
People can be seen trying to help one another, driving through massive wakes of brown water, and generally struggling with the fact that their city has become aquatic in the span of a few days.
Weather authorities in China have issued the highest possible warning level for all of Henan province, and thousands of residents have been evacuated already. Rescue operations are ongoing, and the downpours are expected to last another 24 hours at least, so the situation is not likely to get any easier for anyone in the very near future.
Hopefully, there won’t be any more loss of life, and the rains will quit, allowing the town to begin the undoubtedly very messy business of cleaning up.