At least 30 dead in China storm

Hail and torrential rain cut power supplies in six townships, damaged homes, several hospitals and schools.

Beijing: At least 30 people died and several others were missing on Friday after hail and torrential rains battered a mountainous region in northwest China, authorities said.

The storm affected around 35,000 people of Minxian county in Gansu province, Xinhua reported. At least 29 people were missing and 40 have been hospitalised.

Roads were blocked, houses collapsed, and farmland destroyed due to the extreme weather, officials said.

About 2,000 officials and 800 soldiers and militiamen have reached the region to rescue trapped villagers from storm-battered areas.

The provincial Red Cross sent 1,000 quilts and 1,000 coats to help in disaster relief efforts. The provincial finance bureau has earmarked CNY two million (around USD 320,000) to repair damaged facilities.

The storm disrupted power in six townships, damaged several homes, hospitals and schools, and destroyed over 7,000 hectares of crops.

Minxian is a mountainous county with a population of 450,000. It is located 150 km from Zhouqu, where a rain-triggered mudslide killed more than 1,500 people in August 2010.