Hundreds of people have been killed and more than 1,000 remain missing after landslides sparked by heavy rains struck China’s northwest province of Gansu on Saturday.
Tens of thousands of residents have evacuated the region after many homes were destroyed or buried by the landslides.
Authorities sent nearly 3,000 troops and about 100 medical experts to help in the search and rescue effort.
Al Jazeera’s Harry Fawcett reports.
Soldiers provide food for landslide victims in a newly established shelter site in Zhouqu County, northwest China’s Gansu Province, Aug. 25, 2010. Some of the landslide victims moved to newly established and better equipped shelter sites on Wednesday to spare the classrooms for the students in the coming semester. Some of the victims have been settled in the classrooms of schools in Zhouqu County after the landslide. (Xinhua/Hou Jun)
Staying in China. More heavy rain has triggered fresh landslides in the North-West of the country, claiming at least another twenty-four lives. The worst affected area is Zhouqu in Gansu province. The total death since last weekend is now over a thousand and hopes are fading of finding hundreds of people who are still missing. Jonathan Josephs reports.
At midnight on Sunday, August 8th, a temporary lake caused by a recent landslide broke loose above the town of Zhouqu, in Gannan Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, China. The outflow slid down the valley as a wall of mud, wiping out houses and muli-story buildings, and killing at least 1,144 residents – with over 600 still reported as missing. More than 10,000 soldiers and rescuers arrived soon to comb through the mountains of mud that buried several parts of Zhouqu County. Engineers also worked to blast the debris that had passed through the town to partially block the Bailong River, causing further flooding. Collected here are images of the landslide-affected area of northwestern China, part of a series of disasters in Asia caused by recent heavy rains.
A national day of mourning’s being held across China after last weekend’s landslides left more than 1,200 people dead. About 600 others are still missing after the massive avalanches of mud and rocks. All public forms of entertainment have been suspended. Rescuers are working around the clock trying to help those trapped under the debris and prevent more flooding.
Heavy rain has brought more misery to western China, killing at least 29 people and trapping more than 10,500 in mudslides and floods. . Follow us on twitter at http://twitter.com/itn_news .
In China, the official death toll from devastating mudslides in western Gansu province has gone up to more than 1100. Relief efforts continue as more rain is expected. Locals say the extent of the disaster is much worse than officially reported.
Rescue work in northwest China continues four days after massive landslides have devastated Zhouqu County in Gansu Province.
Hopes of finding survivors are dim, with more rain threatening the already destabilized region.
On Wednesday, the official death toll surged past 1,100, and another 600 are missing. Locals say the extent of the disaster is much worse.
[Mr. Tan, Zhouqu Resident]:
“Now we’ve ascertained that at least 2,000 people have died, there are also some injured. It’s quite serious. Buildings have been flattened, and the mud has build up to two meters in some areas.”
Another resident says more than 9,000 people are missing.
On Monday, Hong Kong media Apple Daily reported one local resident put the death toll at over 4,000.
But with a ban by the Chinese regime’s Central Propaganda Department on journalists visiting the area, the severity of the disaster cannot be verified.
For now, displaced resident are doing what they can to uncover the rubble.
[Mr. Tan, Zhouqu Resident]:
“The main source of rescue is manpower. We use shovels and our hands, basically relying on families and friends. From my estimates, there are a few thousand people at refugee placement points, they’re all homeless.”
And with the mudslide cutting off water and electricity, those who have survived face further challenges….
Rescuers say the chances of finding more survivors amid the mud, stones and debris from landslides and flooding in northwestern China are falling by the hour. More than 700 people are confirmed dead with more than 1,000 listed as missing. (Aug. 11)