The high death toll and widespread damage has sparked anger amongst Beijingers. Many have questioned how such a modern city could be hit so badly by floods [WSJ]. Despite the heavy rain, Beijing along with many other parts of China are also suffering from a stifling heatwave with day time temperatures of up to 34°C. Beijing also saw heavy flooding in June 2011, though there were no reported casualties in the city itself [tvnewswatch: Heavy rain brings flash floods to Beijing].
Flooding is usually confined to the south and east of the country, with often devastating floods annually affecting Guangdong province. The floods seen this week in Beijing might be a wake up call for authorities who may need to look at improving the city's drainage system. There was one positive aspect of the storms perhaps highlighted by a series of photos Xinhua posted on its website. The heavily polluted air [Twitter: BeijingAir] that only days ago had reduced visibility to only a few metres [yfrog] had been washed away and the air quality was once again breathable [Twitter: BeijingAir].
tvnewswatch, London, UK