Dee Finney's blog
start date July 20, 2011
today's date April 21, 2013
TOPIC: CHINA EARTHQUAKE: 6.6 DEADLY
From rt.com - Today, 3:16 AM A 6.6 earthquake struck south-western China,
claiming 56 lives and injuring more than 600 people, according to state media
reports.more than 600 injured.
China Earthquake 2013: Quake In Sichuan Kills At Least 179, Thousands Injured
A village woman reacts after her house
was damaged by an earthquake in Lushan county,
Ya'an, southwest China's Sichuan province on
Saturday, April 20, 2013. The powerful earthquake
struck the steep hills of China's southwestern
Sichuan province Saturday, nearly five years
after a devastating quake wreaked widespread
damage across the region. (AP Photo)
YA'AN, China — Rescuers and relief teams struggled to rush supplies into
the rural hills of China's Sichuan province Sunday after an earthquake left
at least 179 people dead and more than 6,700 injured and prompted frightened
survivors to spend a night in cars, tents and makeshift shelters.
The earthquake Saturday morning triggered landslides that cut off roads
and disrupted phone and power connections in mountainous Lushan county,
further south on the same fault line where a devastating quake wreaked
widespread damage across the region five years ago.
Hardest hit Saturday were villages further up the valleys, where farmers
grow rice, vegetables and corn on terraced plots. Rescuers hiked into
neighboring Baoxing county after its roads were cut off, reaching it
overnight, state media reported. In Longmen village, authorities said nearly
all the buildings had been destroyed in a frightening minute-long shaking by
In the fog-covered town of Shuangli, corn farmer Zheng Xianlan said
Sunday that she had rushed from the fields back to her home when the quake
struck, and cried when she saw that the roof collapsed. She then spent the
night outdoors on a worn sofa using a plastic raincoat for cover.
"We don't earn much money. We don't know what we will do now," said
58-year-old Zheng, her eyes welling with tears. "The government only brought
one tent for the whole village so far, but that's not enough for us."
Along the main roads, ambulances, fire engines and military trucks piled
high with supplies waited in long lines, some turning back to try other
routes when roads were impassable.
Rescuers were forced to dynamite boulders that had fallen across roads,
and rains Saturday night slowed rescue work, state media reported.
Chinese Premier Li Keqiang arrived Saturday afternoon by helicopter in
Ya'an to direct rescue efforts, the government's official Xinhua News Agency
"The current priority is to save lives," Li said, after visiting
hospitals, tents and climbing on a pile of rubble to view the devastation,
according to Xinhua.
Xinhua, citing the China Earthquake Administration, said at least 179 people
had died, and more than 6,700 were injured.
The quake – measured by China's earthquake administration at magnitude 7.0
and by the U.S. Geological Survey at 6.6 – struck shortly after 8 a.m. Saturday,
when many people were at home, sleeping or having breakfast.
Tens of thousands of people moved into tents or cars, unable to return home
or too afraid to go back as aftershocks continued to jolt the region. In Ya'an,
the city that administers Lushan, residents sat in groups outside convenience
stores watching the news on television sets early Sunday. Fourteen-year-old Wang
Xing sat with her family on chairs by the roadside in the cool night air, a
large blanket on her lap.
Wang and her relatives decided to spend the night in their cars. "We don't
feel safe sleeping at home tonight," said Wang, a student. She said the quake
cracked the walls of her family's house. "It was very scary when it happened. I
ran out of my bed and out of the house. I didn't even have my shoes on."
As in most natural disasters, the government mobilized thousands of soldiers
and others, sending excavators and other heavy machinery as well as tents,
blankets and other emergency supplies. Two soldiers died after their vehicle
slide off a road and rolled down a cliff, state media reported.
The Chinese Red Cross said it had deployed relief teams with supplies of
food, water, medicine and rescue equipment to the disaster areas.
Lushan, where the quake struck, lies where the fertile Sichuan plain meets
foothills that eventually rise to the Tibetan plateau and sits atop the
Longmenshan fault. It was along the same fault line that a devastating
magnitude-7.9 quake struck on May 12, 2008, leaving more than 90,000 people dead
or missing and presumed dead in one of the worst natural disasters to strike
China in recent decades.
"It was just like May 12," Liu Xi, a writer in Ya'an city, said via a private
message on his account on the Twitter-like Weibo service. "All the home
decorations fell at once, and the old house cracked."
The official Xinhua News Agency said the well-known Bifengxia panda preserve,
which is near Lushan, was not affected by the quake. Dozens of pandas were moved
to Bifengxia from another preserve, Wolong, after its habitat was wrecked by the
Associated Press writer Didi Tang contributed from Beijing.
At least 156 dead and
6,000 injured after 6.6-magnitude earthquake in same Chinese region where huge
tremor killed 90,000 five years ago
- Warnings death toll could rise with more than 5,500 left injured
- Quake hit shortly after 8am local time in Lushan county in the
city of Ya'an
- Images show buildings in Sichuan province flattened by powerful
- Reports indicate almost every structure in one village collapsed
At least 156 people have been killed and thousands more left injured
after a powerful earthquake jolted China's Sichuan province near the same area
where a devastating quake struck five years ago.
More than 5,500 people are reported to have been injured in the
earthquake which struck mountainous Lushan county shortly after 8am this morning
local time, and 19 people have been reported missing in the wake of the tremor.
The earthquake, while not as destructive as the one in 2008, toppled
buildings, triggered landslides and disrupted phone and power connections in the
Destruction: This aerial photograph shows the damage caused by the
earthquake in Lushan county, Ya'an, in China's Sichuan province
The village of Longmen was hit particularly hard, with authorities
saying nearly all the buildings there had been destroyed by the terrifying
The China Earthquake Administration said at least 156 people had died,
including 96 in Lushan. In the jurisdiction of Ya'an, which administers Lushan,
19 people were reported missing and more than 5,500 people were injured, the
'It was such a big quake that everyone was scared,' said a woman who
answered the phone at a kindergarten hours later and declined to give her name.
'We all fled for our lives.'
Emergency workers turned the square outside the Lushan County Hospital
into a triage center, where medical personnel bandaged bleeding victims,
according to footage on China Central Television.
Rescuers used dynamite to clear boulders that had fallen across roads
to reach Longmen and other damaged areas lying farther up the mountain valleys,
state media reported.
The quake - measured by the earthquake administration at magnitude-7.0
and by the U.S. Geological Survey at 6.6 - struck the steep hills of Lushan
county shortly after 8 a.m., when many people were at home, sleeping or having
People in their underwear and wrapped in blankets ran into the streets
of Ya'an and even the provincial capital of Chengdu, 70 miles east of Lushan,
according to photos, video and accounts posted online.
The quake's shallow depth, less than 8 miles, is likely to have
magnified its impact.
Chengdu's airport shut down for about an hour before reopening, though
many flights were cancelled or delayed, and its railway station halted dozens of
scheduled train rides Saturday, state media said.
Lushan reported the most deaths, but there was concern that casualties
in neighboring Baoxing county might have been under-reported because of
inaccessibility after roads were blocked and power and phone services cut off.
Shocking scenes: The sign outside this collapsed building in Sichuan
province, where the earthquake struck at around 8am local time, is
understood to be a kindergarten
Forecasts are pointing to more rain over the coming days, and the China
Meteorological Administration warned of possible landslides and other geological
Tens of thousands of people moved into tents or cars, unable to return
home or too afraid to go back as aftershocks continued to jolt the region.
Lushan, where the quake struck, lies where the fertile Sichuan plain
meets foothills that eventually rise to the Tibetan plateau and sits atop the
Longmenshan fault. It was along that fault line that a devastating magnitude-7.9
quake struck on May 12, 2008, leaving more than 90,000 people dead or missing
and presumed dead in one of the worst natural disasters to strike China in
'It was just like May 12,' Liu Xi, a writer in Ya'an city, who was
jolted awake by today's quake, said via a private message on his account on Sina
Corporation's Twitter-like Weibo service. 'All the home decorations fell at
once, and the old house cracked.'
The official Xinhua News Agency said the well-known Bifengxia panda
preserve, which is near Lushan, was not affected by the quake. Dozens of pandas
were moved to Bifengxia from another preserve, Wolong, after its habitat was
wrecked by the 2008 quake.
As in most natural disasters, the government mobilized thousands of
soldiers and others - 7,000 people by this afternoon - sending excavators and
other heavy machinery as well as tents, blankets and other emergency supplies.
Two soldiers died after the vehicle that they and more than a dozen
others were in slipped off the road and rolled down a cliff, state media
Aftermath: People were seen walking over the rubble of collapsed buildings
after the devastating earthquake in China this morning
Tremors: This photograph shows an enormous rock blocking a road about 20km
from Lushan in Ya'an city
Taking shelter: Families were seen gathered outside a building in Chengdu,
China this morning in the aftermath of the earthquake
gathered on the street and away from buildings in Shifang in Sichuan
province in case of aftershocks
Premier Li Keqiang flew to Ya'an to direct rescue efforts, and he and
President Xi Jinping ordered officials and rescuers to make saving people the
top priority, Xinhua said.
The Chinese Red Cross said it had deployed relief teams with supplies
of food, water, medicine and rescue equipment to the disaster areas.
With roads blocked for several hours after the quake, the military
surveyed the disaster area by air.
Aerial photos released by the military and shown on state television
showed individual houses in ruins in Lushan and outlying villages flattened into
rubble. The roofs of some taller buildings appeared to have slipped off,
exposing the floors beneath them.
A person whose posts to the micro-blogging account 'Qingyi Riverside'
on Weibo carried a locator geotag for Lushan said many buildings collapsed and
that people could spot helicopters hovering above.
The earthquake administration said there had been at least 712
aftershocks, including two of magnitude-5.0 or higher.
'It's too dangerous,' said a person with the Weibo account
Chengduxinglin and with a Lushan geotag. 'Even the aftershocks are scary.'
While rescuers and state media rushed to the disaster scene, China's
active social media users filled the information gap. They posted photos of
people fleeing to streets for safety and of buildings flattened by the quake.
They shared information on the availability of phone services,
apparently through data services.