Chinese residents looking for a reprieve from the deep freeze that recently settled over China will have to wait until next week for temperatures to rise.
The cold front, which hit many parts of China on Thursday, brought heavy snow to regions along the Yangtze and Huaihe Rivers, as well as Tibet with temperatures dipping by as much as 14 degrees Celsius.
A blue alert was issued by the National Meteorological Center (NMC) on Wednesday morning for snow storms.
This weekend, Shanghai is expected to experience its coldest weather in 35 years, with temperatures plunging to -10 degrees Celsius in the outskirts of the city. Shanghai has already been hit with sleet and drizzle as temperatures hover around 1 to 2 degrees Celsius.
Chinese farmers are bracing themselves for the worst: “The temperature will stay in the negative for several days. Only ten percent of the vegetables will survive,” said Zhu Dazhi, a farmer in central China’s Hunan province.
The weather may cause travel disruptions for the upcoming Spring Festival, taking place this year on February 8.
Last winter, 76.8 billion yuan ($12 billion) was set aside to help underpoverished urban and rural residents combat the cold weather. In 2013, winter cold killed some 180,000 cattle and froze power lines in northern China, threatening millions with a loss of electrical power.
The worst winter storm in recent Chinese history was back in 2008, when severe ice and snow storms caused extensive damage in central and southern China.