Two dams collapsed in China's northwestern region of Inner Mongolia after heavy rains, Reuters reports, citing a statement from the water ministry on Monday.
Both dams were located in the Inner Mongolian city of Hulunbuir and collapsed on Sunday. There were more than 1.6 trillion cubic feet of water capacity between both dams.
On July 18, the dams on the open spillway of Yong'an Reservoir and Xinfa Reservoir in the Daur Autonomous Banner of Morin Dawa, were breached and collapsed as the water level of the Nuomin River continued to rise because of heavy rain, according to People's Daily.
The dam collapse reportedly affected 16,660 people, flooded 325,622 mu (21708.1 hectares) of farmland, and destroyed 22 bridges, 124 culverts, and 15.6 kilometers of highways.
At 8 pm on Sunday, the national flood control administration issued a third-level emergency response and sent a working group to the scene to guide and assist local emergency management.
Local citizens were evacuated to safe places before the collapse, and no casualties have been reported as of press time. -Global Times
Footage posted on social media shows the collapse and subsequent flooding downstream.
Two dams in northern China collapsed. The waters of the corresponding reservoirs are flooding nearby towns.
Video shows water overtopping one of the dams and minutes later the entire dam is washed away. The damage is catastrophic.
July 18, 2021
Hulunbuir, Inner Mongolia pic.twitter.com/ST5hnLZ5zy
Two dams in Hulun Buir City in North China’s Inner Mongolia were reported to have collapsed on Sunday because of heavy rain since Saturday. No injuries have been reported.https://t.co/jI6pUO5k6F pic.twitter.com/CLEQ6fN0L5— Global Times (@globaltimesnews) July 19, 2021
The collapse of the dams highlights the safety risks posed by aging infrastructure during the summer flood season.
During this time last year, the Three Gorges Dam was suspected to be on the edge of failure after water levels at the world's largest dam were at extreme levels.
Severe weather has been seen worldwide, with floods in Europe and Asia and heatwaves in North America.