Adults rivers, channels and reservoirs in Guangdong province in the south China are at risk of overflowwhich forced the government today to implement emergency plans to protect more than 127 million people from widespread flooding expected in the region.

Calling the situation “ominous”, local weather service officials said water levels in parts of rivers and tributaries in the Xinjiang and Beijiang basins were reaching record highs only once every 50 yearsas broadcast by the state-run CCTV network today.

Widespread flooding is expected in the Beijiang River basin, China’s Ministry of Water Resources warned, according to CCTV, prompting authorities to issue an emergency alert.

Guangdong officials called on local agencies and municipal authorities to implement scontingency plans to prevent natural disasters and release financial aid and supplies in a timely manner to ensure that those affected have food, clothing, water and shelter.

The province has been experiencing heavy rainfall accompanied by strong winds since last night.

Heavy rains hit the central and northern parts of the province in Zhaoqing, Shaoguan, Qingguan and Jiangmen yesterday for twelve hours, from 8 pm (local time, 15.00 Greek time).

Nearly 20,000 people have been displaced in Qingguan, state media said, while some energy facilities in Zhaoqing were damaged, causing power cuts in some areas. Muddy waters swept a vehicle down a narrow road in Zhaoqing, as seen in a video posted by Hongxing News. “The rain was pouring down like a waterfall for an hour and a half on the freeway while I was driving home last night,” one user wrote on social media. “I couldn’t even see the road.”