Tue, June 16, 2009
China > Mainland

Heavy rain sweeps Beijing

2009-06-16 10:14:44 GMT2009-06-16 18:14:44 (Beijing Time)  Xinhua English

Car lights are switched on as Beijing is plunged into darkness during a thunderstorm around lunch time in Beijing, China, Tuesday, June 16, 2009. [Sina.com.cn]

Taxis are seen in the heavy rain in Beijing, China, June 16, 2009. Local authority released a yellow alert for lightings on Tuesday.(Xinhua/Gong Lei)

The street lamps are turned on along eastern Chang'an street in Beijing, China, June 16, 2009. Local authority released a yellow alert for lightings on Tuesday.(Xinhua/Gao Xueyu)

Local residents ride in heavy rain as the street lamps are turned on in downtown Beijing, China, June 16, 2009. Local authority released a yellow alert for lightings on Tuesday.(Xinhua/Luo Xiaoguang)

Photo taken on June 16, 2009 shows general view of Guomao bridge in Beijing, China. Local authority released a yellow alert for lightings on Tuesday.

BEIJING, June 16 (Xinhua) -- Beijing's meteorological station released two alarms Tuesday on a heavy rain at noon.

The sky turned dark when a drizzle became downpours accompanied by thunder and lightning at about 11 a.m.

The Municipal Meteorological Station raised the thunder and lightning alarm to the level of rainstorm at noon, when average rainfall in the downtown area reached 11 millimeters, said Guo Hu, head of the station.

The average precipitation in the city was 7 mm as of noon.

Street lights turned on and vehicles were crawling amid heavy rainfalls with their headlights on.

The thunderstorm abated at about 2 p.m. but showers are expected at night in the downtown area and more rains are possiblein the next couple of days, according to weather forecast.

The city's public transport authority arranged 200 standby buses in case of increasing passenger flows.

The neighboring city of Tianjin also suffered similar weather conditions on Tuesday noon with the maximum rainfall of 20 mm, said Yi Xiaoyuan, the city's chief weather forecaster.

The rainfall is expected to last till midnight.

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