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Heavy rainfall leads to big rise in Yangtze water levels

10 July 2013
Recent heavy rainfall in the upper reaches of the Yangtze River has led to a sudden and dramatic rise in water levels in the Luzhou-Chongqing section of the river as well as the Yichang section immediately beyond the Three Gorges Dam.

According to official reports, the water level in Luzhou rose by 4.2 metres over a 24-hour period between the 7 and 8 July. The swift currents and dramatic change in water levels loosened some of the buoys and brought with them floating waste, leading to hazardous shipping conditions.

In the Yichang area, waterway workers collected more than 30 tons of floating waste that had become attached to some 80 mooring buoys.

Officials from the Yangtze Maritime Safety Authorities warned that continued rainfall in the upper reaches would raise the water level further and all mooring vessels needed to be secure. They urged all passing vessels to remain vigilant about uprooted trees and other floating waste that might be in their path. Yichang MSA has already activated its emergency rescue code and urged vessels carrying dangerous cargo, in particular, to adhere to the commands of MSA officials to ensure safety.

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