Early last week Supply Chain Matters indicated an alert to our readers regarding extraordinary torrential rains and flooding conditions impacting China. The most visible incidents have been the flooding and loss of life that impacted the city of Beijing, but flooding conditions and increased flood warnings threaten many parts of the country.

A posting on China.org indicates that the extreme rains this summer are testing flood defenses of China’s traditionally arid northern regions. On Monday, the Chinese government initiated an emergency response plan for flooding conditions in China’s Shanxi province, while the extreme amounts of rainfall have caused water levels of the Yellow and Yangtze Rivers to continue to rise. Both of these rivers serve as primary modes of water transit. According to a report published by Bloomberg, some 40,000 people in the northern provinces of Shanxi and Shanxi had to be evacuated in recent days.

The Three Gorges Dam on the Yangtze is reported to be managing the largest flood peak in nine years, but then again, the source is government reports.  Additional tropical storms threaten southeast China while the National Meteorological Center forecast calls for additional rains in the country’s north and northeast areas for the coming ten days.

We issued our alert on a strong suspicion that since much manufacturing activity has been shifted to interior regions of China, the current unusual rains and flooding is bound to have an impact on transportation, logistics and potentially production.  We have not come across hard evidence as yet, but it may just be a matter of time.

We continue to advise global supply chain teams to continue to monitor this situation very closely over the coming days and stay in contact with China based suppliers and contract manufacturers. Now is the time for monitoring and contingency planning.

We would like to hear from teams who may have already experienced some disruption in supply chain activities as a result of these ongoing conditions.  Send us your feedback via email: info <at> supply-chain-matters <dot> com.