China’s shopping centre scene has been a bit of a disaster lately, but the crush of bad news reached a new level last week when a flash flood surged through a mall in the city of Jinan, washing away merchandise and turning store aisles into whitewater rapids.
The Ginza shopping centre in the capital of China’s Shandong province was hit by a wall of water caused by the seasonal “plum rains” that usually come to the eastern part of the country in early summer. What wasn’t usual this year was a spate of bad weather that saw killer storms strike from Guangdong in the south up through Tianjin in the north.
A video shown on local social media shows terrified shoppers clinging to each other as knee-deep water raged through the mall, sweeping away racks of clothing, furniture and other goods.
Killer Storms Strike Eastern and Southern China
The Jinan flood came as severe weather pounded many parts of China, in some places causing more serious consequences. A tornado struck the coastal city of Yancheng in Jiangsu province last week, with winds of up to 125 kilometres per hour levelling whole villages, according to a report by the official Xinhua news agency.
As many as 98 people were killed and another 800 injured in the Yancheng storm, while severe flooding in southern China has reportedly kill 22 people this month, and forced the evacuation of 460,000 more.