At least 3 electrocuted in street during south China storms

Deaths raise concerns on social media about the safety of roadside electrical equipment in Guangdong province

PUBLISHED : Monday, 11 June, 2018, 4:31pm
UPDATED : Monday, 11 June, 2018, 4:49pm

At least three people are suspected to have died from electrocution during heavy rains in southern China last week due to faulty or poorly maintained electrical equipment in the streets, Chinese media reported.

A mother and daughter were killed during torrential rain in Foshan in Guandong province last Friday because of faulty electric wiring on an advertising hoarding at a bus stop.

Passers-by saw the two lying in the water and called the police.

All the power at bus stops in the district was later turned off as a precaution.

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A seventeen-year-old student was also killed on Friday while crossing the road in Guangzhou.

An initial investigation suggested the teenage boy died from an electric shock as a nearby electric power supply box had flooded.

A local government official later ruled out electrocution as the cause of death, but on Monday the local public Security Bureau said in a statement it may have been a factor in killing the boy.

Police in Zhaoqiing in Guangdong province are also investigating the death of a man who suddenly collapsed while walking in pooled water on Friday morning, but the cause of death was not clear.

The deaths have led people to express concern on social media about the safety of electrical equipment in the streets.

One internet user wrote: “Shouldn’t the city planning authority take the blame and be punished? It’s not even safe to walk.”

Another said they had to walk through dangerously flooded streets in Guangzhou last Friday. “I felt so lucky when I got home safely,” she wrote.

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Tropical Storm Ewiniar made landfall in multiple parts of Hainan island and Guangdong province last week, bringing heavy rain and strong winds.

Some areas in Guangzhou saw rainfall as heavy as 10cm an hour, with many areas flooded with water up to 40cm deep.