China downgrades Typhoon Chaba but heavy rains to fall in several provinces

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BEIJING (REUTERS) - Typhoon Chaba weakened into a tropical depression on Monday (July 4), but it was still expected to bring heavy rains in the central and eastern parts of China over the next few days as it moved northward.

The Central Meteorological Observatory lifted the typhoon blue warning on Chaba late on Sunday (July 3).

Over the weekend, China's first typhoon of the year brought heavy rains and wind to several southern provinces already water-logged from weeks of torrential rains and thunderstorms.

As of early Monday morning, the centre of Chaba was located in the southern region of Guangxi. It was expected to move in a north-easterly direction at a speed of 10 kmh to 15 kmh into Hunan and Hubei provinces, the China Meteorological Administration said.

From Monday to Wednesday (July 6), forecasters expect heavy rains and some strong winds in Guangdong province, the Guangxi region, and Jiangxi, Hunan, Hubei, Henan and Shandong provinces.

Strong rainfall was expected in North and North-east China, and other places through early next week.

More than two dozen crew on an engineering vessel with 30 people on board went missing on Friday (July 1), after it snapped in two in waters off Hong Kong as Chaba passed through, the authorities said.

In recent weeks, historic rainfall and flooding in southern China had destroyed property, paralysed traffic and disrupted the daily lives of millions.

Extreme weather, including unusually heavy flooding, was expected to continue in China through August, forecasters predicted last week.

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