China combs through quake region for victims

Pauline Gross
August 11, 2017

Authorities fear that the toll may rise. At least 28 people had serious injuries, according to the Aba prefecture government in Sichuan province.

The Vietnam National Administration of Tourism has asked worldwide tour operators in the country to follow the developments of a severe quake that recently hit China's Sichuan province and adjust their schedules to ensure safety for tourists.

The U.S. Geological Survey said it was magnitude-6.5 and just 9 kilometers (5.5 miles) deep, while the China Earthquake Networks Center measured the earthquake at magnitude-7.0 and said it struck at a depth of 20 kilometers (12 miles).

President Xi Jinping called for an all-out effort to quickly organize aid and rescue measures. Sparkling Lake، one of the park's most famous spots suffered severe damage.

A man surnamed Song who answered the phone at a local emergency office in Aba prefecture, where the Jiuzhaigou national park is located, said the nearby town of Zhangzha reported the deaths and injuries.

Most of the wounded were admitted to local hospitals, while some who are severely injured were transferred to hospitals in Mianyang and the provincial capital of Chengdu.

More than 30,000 tourists were in the park when the quake struck, heavily damaging at least one hotel.

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The Jiuzhaigou region is forecast to receive slight to moderate rainfall in the coming days, the provincial meteorological bureau said.

Hundreds of soldiers and rescue personnel have been deployed to the Jiuzhaigou area, along with hundreds of vehicles, and dozens of sniffer dogs and devices to detect life under the rubble.

Speaking to news agency AP, a woman said that people from other regions are frightened after the strong tremors.

The famed Nuoriliang Waterfalls were once one of the star attractions inside the picturesque area in northwestern Sichuan province which captivated tourists from around the world.

China's official natural disaster monitoring agency said more than 1,000 aftershocks had been detected, the most powerful reaching magnitude 4.8 on Wednesday morning.

Yu Qian, a local taxation bureau official, told Xinhua that she felt strong shaking that sent her and her two children rushing from their home on the fifth floor.

It evoked memories of a massive 8.0-magnitude quake that devastated wide areas of the same region in 2008, leaving 87,000 people dead or missing in China's worst seismic disaster in a generation.

Other reports by GizPress

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