Landslides claim 127 lives in China's Zhouqu county

BEIJING: Landslides triggered by heavy downpours, which hit Zhouqu county in northwest China's Gansu Province yesterday, have claimed at least 127 lives, leaving 76 injured and 1,294 missing.

About 45,000 people have been evacuated to higher ground as floodwaters carrying mud and rocks submerged half of the Chengguan township in the county.

Search and rescue operations saw 2,500 military personnel and about 2,000 armed policemen and firefighters working through the night to rescue those who were trapped under the debris and mud, reported the state television network on Monday, Aug 9.

Six helicopters were dispatched to the scene where local residents assisted in the rescue operations which were hindered by four-metre deep flood waters.

According to news reports, torrential rains began Saturday night, resulting in tonnes of mud and rubble forming a barrier lake along the Bailong River and submerging half the county.

At the worst-hit Sanyan valley, a village of some 300 households was entirely submerged by the mudslide and about 2,000 residents were reported missing. -- Bernama
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