Heavy downpours have caused havoc in Beijing and parts of northern China, leading to some of the worst flooding in years. Non-stop torrential rain in the capital has forced the cancellation of hundreds of flights and trains, and flooded city streets and subway stations.

Beijing China floods
People walk out of a flooded subway station in TianjinReuters
Beijing China floods
People attempt to walk into a flooded subway station in TianjinReuters
Beijing China floods
A flooded tunnel next to the Beijing West Railway StationChina Daily/Reuters
Beijing China floods
Taxis plough through water on a flooded street in Shilipu, Chaoyang Road, BeijingJason Lee/Reuters
Beijing China floods
Two men ride on a vehicle through a flooded area in BeijingChina Daily/Reuters
Beijing China floods
A man rides on heavy machinery through a flooded area in Yuncheng, Shanxi ProvinceChina Daily/Reuters
Beijing China floods
People holding umbrellas wade through deep water along a flooded street in Taiyuan, Shanxi ProvinceChina Daily/Reuters

The rain has also threatened embankments along rivers in central China, with authorities mobilising troops and heavy equipment to fill the gaps. Tens of thousands have been evacuated from flood-hit areas. President Xi Jinping warned the country to be prepared for more hardship to come.

This year has been extraordinarily wet – 576 people have been recorded as dead or missing nationwide in the first half of 2016.

Beijing China floods
Vehicles are stranded deep in an underpass in BeijingAFP
Beijing China floods
Rescue workers pull people on an inflatable boat along a flooded street in Taiyuan, Shanxi ProvinceVCG via Getty Images
Beijing China floods
A motorised tricycle makes its way along a flooded street in BeijingAFP
Beijing China floods
A man pushes his scooter through deep water in Taiyuan, Shanxi ProvinceVCG/Getty Images
Beijing China floods
A man holding an umbrella stands next to his stranded vehicle on a flooded street in BeijingReuters
Beijing China floods
People ride along a flooded street during heavy rainfall in BeijingChina Daily/Reuters
Beijing China floods
Rescue vehicles drain water out from a flooded tunnel next to the Beijing West Railway StationReuters
Beijing China floods
Cars are driven through water in Shilipu, Chaoyang Road, BeijingJason Lee/Reuters
Beijing China floods
A man delivers food on a flooded street in Shilipu, Chaoyang Road, BeijingJason Lee/Reuters
Beijing China floods
People wade through deep water in Shilipu, Chaoyang Road, BeijingJason Lee/Reuters

China's south has also been hit by floods that strike annually during the monsoon season that began in May, but this rainy season has been particularly wet. Water levels in some major rivers have exceeded those of 1998, when the worst floods in recent years killed 4,150 people, most of them along the Yangtze River, China's mightiest. Authorities this year have already taken emergency measures, including discharging water from the Three Gorges Dam on the Yangtze.