China’s People Daily has reported that a huge fire has broken out in the Hebei Province, in the north-east of the country. The videos of fires appear to come from numerous locations, with one showing a large area of fields in flame.

On 18 March 2020, the daily high in Beijing spiked to 23°F, considerably above the average daily high of 12°C, with winds hitting 23mph.

A news report on NTD, meanwhile, showed fires torching a range of rural and urban locations in Beijing, Hebei and Tianjin and other locations throughout the country, as first responders struggled to deal with biting gale force winds.

Social Media

In addition to official news broadcasts, netizens have reported that a 27th Army warehouse near Shijiazhuang has exploded. The following accompanied the tweet put out by an anonymous poster on Twitter (via Google Translate):

“… I don’t have the ability to confirm, but from the scene picture, it looks like a large military warehouse, because there are no buildings around, and it is located in the suburbs or rural areas. The CCP is accustomed to placing troops far from urban areas. An important reason is also to facilitate brainwashing of soldiers. What exactly happened in Beijing last night? 38 army barracks exploded, 27 army warehouses exploded? Maybe we never know.”

The geographic spread of the as-yet unverified video reports emerging on social media suggest that China is facing a widescale fire emergency.

Weather Reports

China’s National Early Warning Center has issued an Orange Warning for forest fire risk, which runs through 21 March 2020. Citizens are advised not to start any fires in forested areas, and immediately to report forest fires on 12119.

市森防办与市气象台于3月14日0时联合发布森林火险橙色预警:3月14日至21日本市将陆续出现4级左右偏北风,阵风6、7级。请广大市民不要携带火种进入林区,严禁野外一切违规违章用火。一旦发现森林火情,请及时拨打报警电话12119。

Also on the weather front, authorities in China warned of sand and duststorms hitting Inner Mongolia, Hebei and Shanxi between Wednesday night and Thursday morning.

A cold front is expected to chill parts of north China in the next two days. Those regions will see strong winds and temperature drops of up to 10 degrees Celsius, according to the NMC.

The NMC warned of fire risks due to low humidity and dry wind, and advised the public to take precautions against falling objects and dust.

Picture (c) Twitter.

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