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Premier stresses flood control, disaster relief

Updated: Jul 26,2021 10:29 PM    english.www.gov.cn

All-out efforts should be made in flood control and disaster relief through enhanced accountability and improved measures, putting the safety of people’s lives and property first, Premier Li Keqiang said.

Premier Li, a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, chaired a teleconference at the State Flood Control and Drought Relief Headquarters on July 26.

The meeting focused on current and future work related to flood control and prevention, emergency rescue and disaster relief.

At the meeting, the Ministry of Emergency Management submitted a report on behalf of the State Flood Control and Drought Relief Headquarters. Premier Li talked via video link with officials in charge of the provinces of Henan, Hebei, Jiangsu, Zhejiang and Anhui, facing the huge task of flood control and disaster relief, and heard reports from several other departments concerned, including the China Meteorological Administration, the Ministry of Water Resources, and the Ministry of Transport.

Learning about their progress and follow-up preparations, the Premier required working on every detail of various measures to ensure safety.

Extreme downpours recently lashed some regions of China, causing huge casualties and property losses, he said, recognizing the great efforts by related departments in response to the disaster. More work should be done, the Premier added.

Now is the most crucial stage in flood prevention, the Premier said, demanding wide-reaching measures and precautions to minimize losses amid a very severe situation, as heavy rain is forecast to hit parts of northern China and the typhoon is expected to significantly affect coastal areas.

Premier Li urged always prioritizing the safety of people's lives and property and sparing no efforts in flood control and disaster relief. There is nothing more important than human life, so rescuing trapped people should be the primary task in disaster-affected areas such as Henan province, said the Premier, stressing that no one be left behind and no place neglected.

Losses and casualties should both be reduced to a minimum. As long as there is a glimmer of hope, every effort should be made, said the Premier. Professional teams and equipment should be allocated in time, and social forces should be mobilized to support places in need. Information distribution such as rescue should be made public in a realistic, open and transparent manner.

Key areas and weak links should get special attention, Premier Li said. Rainstorms, floods and typhoons should be closely monitored and forecast, and the early-warning and response mechanism should be strengthened. Timely warning and response should be ensured to improve the emergency response capacity and people's awareness of self-protection.

In cases of emergency with serious waterlogging in the city, residents should be organized in time to avoid risks. Except for special industries, factories, schools and business operation should be resolutely shut down, and electricity and water supply and smooth communication in hospitals and other important units should be ensured.

Densely populated underground spaces in cities such as subways and tunnels should have strict measures to protect the safety of people. When necessary, such places should be locked down to effectively avoid casualties. Special attention should be paid to the safety of key rivers, reservoirs, dams, and major infrastructure and flood prevention in key urban public places. Ongoing patrols and inspections should be intensified, and adequate materials for flood control and disaster relief should be prepared. Any danger should be immediately addressed without any neglect or delay. Also, disasters such as mudslides and debris flows should be strictly prevented, said Premier Li.

He demanded efforts to comfort and compensate the families of the deceased, safeguard the basic living of those who have been affected or relocated, strengthen sanitary and epidemic prevention, quicken drainage work, and seize every minute to restore electricity and water supply, as well as transportation and communication. Production will be resumed and reconstruction carried out, with the first batch of central finance worth billions of yuan to be allocated. Local authorities should also arrange special funds, and make good use of social donations in an open and transparent way.

Premier Li stressed strict responsibility implementation at different levels, and those who neglect their duties will be taken to account. By accumulating experiences and drawing lessons, contingency plans should be improved, and capacity of preventing and coping with emergencies enhanced. Related departments should stick to people-oriented attitude, guard peace and safety, and promote stable and healthy economic and social development.

State councilors Wang Yong and Xiao Jie, and He Lifeng, head of the National Development and Reform Commission, also attended the event.

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