BEIJING – Lightning killed 37 people in eastern China in a span of three days, including a dozen farmers who were struck as they worked in a field, state media reported Tuesday.
Fierce storms swept across central, southern and eastern China over the weekend, causing an additional 11 deaths blamed on flooding or house collapses, the official Xinhua News Agency reported, citing the Ministry of Civil Affairs. About 73,000 people were displaced and 8,100 homes destroyed.
The 12 farmers died as they worked in a field Sunday outside the city of Shangrao in Jiangxi province, and the following day five people were struck as they built a tomb in neighboring Zhejiang province, Xinhua said.
Others who were killed by lightning between Saturday and Tuesday included a 56-year-old woman and her 14-year-old grandson who had sought shelter underneath a corrugated tin roof, and two residents of Nanchang city who had huddled beneath a tree.
Xinhua did not provide details on all the victims, 32 of whom died in Jiangxi province.
Forecasters said the lightning storms and rain were not expected to subside until Wednesday.