China Flood: Death toll climbs sharply to 302, about 50 people still remain unaccounted for

The deaths in the recent floods in China’s central Henan province has risen to at least 302, officials confirmed.

About 50 people still remain missing after the region was engulfed by severe flooding caused by heavy rainfall.

Floods affected over 13 million people and damaged nearly 9,000 homes.

The majority of the deaths were reported in the city of Zhengzhou where floodwater inundated the city’s subway system and vehicles were swept away.

The city reported a year’s rainfall within the space of three days.

On Monday the mayor of Zhengzhou, Hou Hong, confirmed the death toll in a news conference, telling reporters that 39 people were found dead in underground car parks.

Another 14 people were killed after water inundated Line 5 of the city’s subway system, she said. Video footage posted on social media earlier from inside train carriages showed people just managing to keep their heads above water.

Last week, a floral tribute at the subway station was sealed off by authorities.

Several dams and reservoirs in the province breached warning levels and soldiers were mobilised to divert rivers which had burst their banks.