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Yellow River Flood (1887, 1931, 1938)

  • By: Jill S.M Coleman
  • In: Encyclopedia of Disaster Relief
  • Edited by: K. Bradley Penuel & Matt Statler
  • Subject:Public Health (general), Public Policy (general)

Situated in northern China, the Yellow River (or Huang He) has been the site of numerous catastrophic floods that have killed more people than any other river. Three particularly devastating floods occurred in 1887, 1931, and 1938, resulting in millions losing their lives and millions more losing their property and livelihood. For these reasons, the Yellow River is often known as China's Sorrow or The Ungovernable.

The Yellow River is the second-longest river in China and the sixth-longest river in the world, at approximately 3,395 miles, covering a drainage basin of some 290,000 square miles. The headwaters are located in the Kunlun Mountains of Qinghai province on the northeastern edge of the Tibetan Plateau. The river then flows generally eastward and presently empties into a delta ...

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