Chinese Premier Li Keqiang on Monday called for all-out efforts to ramp up flood control and disaster relief, putting the safety of people's lives and property first.
Li, also a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, made the remarks while chairing a video conference at the State Flood Control and Drought Relief Headquarters in Beijing.
He listened to reports from officials from disaster-affected regions, the Ministry of Emergency Management, the China Meteorological Administration, the Ministry of Water Resources, the Ministry of Natural Resources, the Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development and the Ministry of Transport at the conference.
Recent downpours caused heavy casualties and property losses to parts of the country, said Li. He called for comprehensive preventive safety measures to minimize losses when bracing heavy forecasted rains in north China and typhoons in coastal areas.
Rescuing the stranded should be the primary task of flood control and disaster relief work in disaster-stricken regions, including Henan Province, said Li.
He required efforts to timely dispatch professional teams and equipment and to release rescue information openly and transparently.
More work is needed to strengthen weak links of disaster control to improve the country's emergency response-ability and people's awareness of self-protection, the premier said.
In case of emergencies such as severe urban waterlogging, it is necessary to organize the public to take shelter in time, and schools and workplaces should be shut down decisively, said Li.
Li urged efforts in disaster-hit areas to ensure the livelihood of the affected, strengthen health and epidemic prevention, speed up dredging and drainage, and restore power and water supply, transportation, and communication urgently.
The premier said that the government would allocate billions of yuan from the central financial reserve in advance to support severely affected areas to carry out major production recovery and post-disaster reconstruction.