Over 140 people feared buried in China landslide
BEIJING: Chinese rescue crews have covered the rocks Saturday in a frenzied search of more than 140 feared people buried after the landslide crashed in a mountain village in Sichuan Province, southwest.
A couple and a baby were rescued and taken to hospital after more than 40 homes in the town of Xinmo were swallowed by huge rocks when a mountainside collapsed, according to the Maoxin County government.
At least 141 people and 46 houses were buried, People newspaper published a spokesman for the Maoxin County Government.
The landslide blocked a two kilometer (one mile) stretch and a 1.6 kilometer road.
Rescue teams used ropes to move a massive rock, while dozens of others searched the debris for survivors, according to videos released by the Maoxian government on their Weibo social networking account.
Heavy bulldozers and bulldozers have also been made to remove rocks, the images showed. Doctors were seen treating a woman on a road.
Wang Yongbo, one of the local officials in charge of the rescue work, said the vital signs of one of the survivors “are weak.”
“This is the largest landslide in this area since the Wenchuan earthquake,” he said, referring to the catastrophe that killed 87,000 people in 2008 in a city in Sichuan.
Local Police captain Chen Tiebo said that heavy rains that hit the region in recent days caused landslides.
“There are several tons of rock,” he told CCTV.
“This is a seismic zone here. There is not much vegetation,” Chen said.
Trees can help absorb excess rainfall and prevent landslides.
About 500 people participated in the rescue work, according to CCTV.
An emergency response “to the catastrophic first-class geological disaster” is underway, the local government said, adding that the magnitude of the landslide was not yet clear.
A report from the official Xinhua news agency said the landslide came from a mountaintop in Aba Qiang’s Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture and collapsed.
The landslide hit the village at 6:00 a.m. (22:00 GMT).
President Xi Jinping called on the rescue teams to “spare no effort” in finding survivors, according to CCTV.
Landslides are a common hazard in China’s rural and mountainous regions, especially during heavy rains.
At least 12 people were killed in January, when a landslide crushed a hotel in central Hubei province.
In October, landslides hit eastern China in the wake of typhoon Megi brought on by torrential rains, causing damage and killing at least eight people.
More than 70 people were killed by a landslide at the Shenzhen Mall in southern December 2015, due to inadequate waste disposal.
One of the deadliest landslides occurred in 1991, when 216 people died in southwest Yunnan province.