At least 12 die as storms lash China: state media

At least 12 people died during torrential rainstorms which battered much of northern and southwestern China from Friday night to Saturday, state media reported.

In Beijing, strong winds blew off rooftops killing two people and injuring six others, the Beijing Emergency Medical Center told Xinhua news agency.

Heavy rain flooded roads and caused 223 flights to be cancelled in the capital, as the Beijing Meteorological Bureau issued its second-highest rainstorm alert for the first time since 2005.

The report said Beijing received 95 mm of precipitation on average as of 7:00 pm (1100 GMT), and heavy rainfall is expected to last until Sunday morning.

In the northern Shanxi province, four people were killed and one remained missing after the pick-up truck they were on board was swept into a river while they attempted to cross a bridge, rescuers told the news agency.

Landslides in the southwestern Sichuan province resulted in six deaths, provincial flood control and drought relief officials told the agency.

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