BEIJING, Oct. 20 (Xinhua) -- Natural disasters across China claimed 1,317 lives and left 319 people missing in the first three quarters of the year, according to official figures released Thursday.
The disasters caused direct economic losses of 469.22 billion yuan (69.62 billion U.S. dollars) during the period, said a statement jointly released by the Ministry of Civil Affairs and the National Commission for Disaster Reduction.
About 490,000 houses were razed and 3.198 million were damaged in the disasters.
The disasters included floods, wind, hailstones, typhoons and geological disasters, the statement added.
June and July were the worst months, with July seeing frequent and sudden bursts of downpours.
The average rainfall during the first three quarters were at the highest since 1998.