Mon, September 01, 2008
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Death toll from magnitude-6.1 quake rises to 25 in SW China

2008-08-31 07:47:00 GMT2008-08-31 15:47:00 (Beijing Time) Xinhua English

Residents gather on a tractor to evade earthquake in Bailagu Village, Pingdi Town, Renhe District of Panzhihua City, southwest China's Sichuan Province, August 31, 2008. Twenty-two people were dead after an earthquake measuring 6.1 on the Richter scale hit Panzhihua City happened at 4:30 p.m. (Beijing time) on Saturday. As of 9 p.m., 17 people were reported dead and about 100 others injured in Sichuan, and five people dead and 35 others injured in neighboring Yunnan Province.(Xinhua/Chen Haining

A truck runs past debris of quake-destroyed walls in Datian Town, Renhe District of Panzhihua City, southwest China's Sichuan Province. Twenty-two people were dead after an earthquake measuring 6.1 on the Richter scale hit Panzhihua City on Saturday. (Xinhua/Chen Haining)

Residents gather on a tractor to evade earthquake in Bailagu Village, Pingdi Town, Renhe District of Panzhihua City, southwest China's Sichuan Province, August 31, 2008. Twenty-two people were dead after an earthquake measuring 6.1 on the Richter scale hit Panzhihua City happened at 4:30 p.m. (Beijing time) on Saturday. As of 9 p.m., 17 people were reported dead and about 100 others injured in Sichuan, and five people dead and 35 others injured in neighboring Yunnan Province.(Xinhua/Chen Haining

An emergency vehicle of Panzhihua Telecommunication Bureau runs to Pingdi Town for a rush repair in Renhe District of Panzhihua City, southwest China's Sichuan Province, August 31, 2008. Twenty-two people were dead after an earthquake measuring 6.1 on the Richter scale hit Panzhihua City happened at 4:30 p.m. (Beijing time) on Saturday. As of 9 p.m., 17 people were reported dead and about 100 others injured in Sichuan, and five people dead and 35 others injured in neighboring Yunnan Province.(Xi

Photo taken on Aug. 31, 2008 shows debris of quake-destroyed walls in Datian Town, Renhe District of Panzhihua City, southwest China's Sichuan Province. Twenty-two people were dead after an earthquake measuring 6.1 on the Richter scale hit Panzhihua City on Saturday. As of 9 p.m., 17 people were reported dead and about 100 others injured in Sichuan, and five people dead and 35 others injured in neighboring Yunnan Province. The quake struck the juncture of Renhe District of Panzhihua and Huili Co

PANZHIHUA, Sichuan, Aug. 31 (Xinhua) -- One more death was reported in Huili, a hard-hit county in Saturday's 6.1-magnitude quake, as of 11 a.m. on Sunday, bringing the death toll of the quake to 25.

Saturday's quake also left 192 people injured, and three more people missing in Huili, which falls under jurisdiction of Yi Autonomous Prefecture of Liangshan, a neighbor of Panzhihua City, the epicenter of Saturday's quake, according to Huili County Headquarters of Quake Control and Relief.

No other details are available for the newly found death at the moment.

The quake struck the juncture of Renhe District in Panzhihua and Huili County in Liangshan prefecture at 4:30 p.m. (Beijing time) on Saturday. The epicenter was about 50 km southeast of downtown Panzhihua, at 26.2 degrees north latitude and 101.9 degrees east longitude and at a depth of 10 km, according to the China Earthquake Administration.

IMPACT AND DAMAGES CAUSED BY QUAKE

Areas affected by Saturday's quake are Panzhihua, Huili of Liangshan, both of which are in Sichuan, and Yi Autonomous Prefecture of Chuxiong, Bai Autonomous Prefecture of Dali, Zhaotong City, all in Yunnan Province, and Kunming, the provincial capital of Yunnan.

But most of the fatalities were found in Huili, followed by Chuxiong and Panzhihua. All the three areas -- Huili, Chuxiong and Panzhihua, are found to be on the southern end of the fault line of the May 12 earthquake which left 69,226 people dead, and 17,923 missing and 374,643 others injured.

More than 300 aftershocks were also monitored in the quake zone as of 5 a.m. on Sunday following Saturday's quake, according to Chinese earthquake networks.

The office for emergency response of Panzhihua City said preliminary investigations showed three people were killed and 65 more injured in the 6.1-magnitude quake, alongside destruction of 27,686 residences and plenty of other infrastructure.

Jing Peilang, an official with quake control and relief of Panzhihua City, warned that because of destruction of school buildings, more than 40 primary and middle schools in Panzhihua could not open the new semester which normally starts on Monday.

Local authorities in Panzhihua are making further assessment ofthe impact of the quake.

Southward, some 440,000 people in four regions of Yunnan, a neighbor of Sichuan, were affected by Saturday's quake, including five deaths, 108 injuries, coupled with destruction of 130,00 residences, said a source from the Yunnan Provincial Bureau of Civil Affairs.

The worst hit was Yi Autonomous Prefecture of Chuxiong, where all the five deaths were found, and the direct economic losses were placed at 500 million yuan, according to the office for the quake control and relief headquarters of Chuxiong.

China Earthquake Administration launched a III-class emergency response and dispatched an on-site working team to offer assistance on the same day when 6.1-magnitude quake struck on Saturday.

In the meantime, Chinese Ministry of Civil Affairs also started a IV-level emergency response mechanism at 5 p.m. on Saturday. Andcivil affairs departments in Panzhihua of Sichuan and Yunnan began III-class emergency response to cope with the aftermath of the quake.

Party and government authorities of Panzhihua rushed to the quake zone to direct relief efforts. Relief materials, including drinkable waters, food and 300 tents, as well as emergency financial allocation of five million yuan (714,286 US dollars) were sent to the quake-affected areas.

More than 2,000 people in Huili were mobilized to join the relief operation which was hampered by heavy rains between late Saturday and early Sunday. A total of 1,200 tents, together with about 10 tons of food and drinking water were sent to quake zones in Huili, according to Huang Ling, deputy chief of Huili County Government.

Yunnan Provincial Bureau of Civil Affairs said it had already sent relief materials, including 3,2000 tents, 1,000 cotton-padded quilts, and 25 tons of rice to quake zones in the province. Chuxiong Prefecture also allocated 350,000 yuan for disaster relief.

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