China: A highway collapses in Guangdong, killing at least 19 people

Comment on the photo, State media published photos showing a massive gash in the mountainside

  • author, Joel Gento
  • Role, BBC News

24 people were killed after part of a highway collapsed on a mountainside in China's Guangdong province, after days of heavy rain.

Thirty others were taken to hospital after a 17.9-meter (58-foot) stretch of the Melong Expressway collapsed at 02:10 local time (19:10 GMT) on Wednesday.

The authorities have not yet announced the cause of the accident.

Pictures published by state media showed a massive gash in the forested mountainside below the highway.

State media reported that the 30 people in hospital were “not currently at risk.” The provincial government sent 500 emergency response personnel to the scene.

State media initially reported that 19 people had died, but local authorities later said 24 people had been killed, and the number of injured remained at 30.

Footage that appeared to have been taken shortly after the collapse showed flames and black smoke billowing from beneath the highway.

Authorities said 20 vehicles fell into the collapsed section of the road.

Another video published by state media showed a pile of charred cars partially covered in mud.

The floods also destroyed dozens of homes, closed schools, and caused flight cancellations and delays. Authorities estimated economic losses at about 140.6 million yuan ($19.4 million, £15.5 million).

Hailstones the size of golf balls were also seen falling on the city.

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