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Death toll in China`s earthquake rises to 95

Last Updated: Tuesday, July 23, 2013 - 23:02

Beijing: The death toll in twin shallow earthquakes in China`s northwest Gansu province near Tibet rose to 95 on Tuesday while rescue workers struggled to reach remote areas to reach victims buried under landslides.

Over 1,000 injured in the 6.6-magnitude earthquake jolted the juncture area of Minxian and Zhangxian counties in the city of Dingxi yesterday, official media here reported on Tuesday.

One person remained missing, the Gansu provincial earthquake emergency response centre said.

Fourteen people who went missing in the earthquakes have been confirmed dead, bringing the death toll to 95, local authorities said today.

The disaster has left leaving 95 dead and 1,001 injured, said Zhang Kebing, deputy director of the provincial civil affairs department.

As per initial reports about 51,800 houses were collapsed and 2.40 lakh houses severely damaged.

Local governments have relocated over 2.26 lakh people, state-run Xinhua reported.
Over 400 aftershocks rocked the area causing extensive damage.

Reports in the official media said no casualties have been reported in schools so far from the earthquake as all the summer schools were closed for summer vacation.

Thousands of relief workers were sent to clear the debris and rescue as many people as possible in the gold 42 hour period.

Two helicopters and about 3,000 armed police, firefighters, local militiamen and local government staff have been sent to the quake-hit region to help with rescue efforts.

The Ministry of Civil Affairs has allotted 10,000 tents, 30,000 quilts and 10,000 sleeping bags to the quake-hit region.

Train services on a major railway line have been suspended because of heavy rain and landslides that have occurred.

In addition to aftershocks, falling rocks were reported in the mountainous region following the quake, posing a threat to rescuers helping villagers.

The quake occurred on a fault zone in the province, which has recorded 25 earthquakes with a magnitude of more than 5, the China Earthquake Administration said.

Residents in Minxian said the quake lasted for about a minute, with sources at the county government saying most of the townships in the area have been affected.

Wang Shan, an archaeologist from the Gansu Provincial Institute of Historic Relics and Archaeology, said he and his colleagues ran out of their houses in Shuzha village in Minxian when the quake struck.

"We had just finished our breakfast. I could feel the earth was shaking vertically but the horizontal tremor was not very obvious," he told state-run China Daily.

He said a series of aftershocks occurred in the morning and some of them were so strong that his family members in Lanzhou could feel them.


First Published: Tuesday, July 23, 2013 - 09:17
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