Natural disasters affected about 94.94 million people in China over the first three quarters of this year, with direct economic losses of $44 billion, the country’s Ministry of Emergency Management said Sunday.

In a report, the ministry stated that about 5.26 million people were relocated to safe places during the Jan.-Sept. period, due to extreme weather-triggered disasters.

China experienced extremely heavy rainfall 39 times in the first three quarters, leading to floods and road waterlogging, especially in the provinces of Henan and Shaanxi, according to the ministry.

Earthquakes, typhoons, droughts, snow disasters and forest fires also caused damage to various extents.

However, the overall impact of natural disasters over the past nine months was smaller than during the same period over the past five years, with the affected population and direct economic losses down 31 percent and 14 percent, respectively.