Source: Xinhua | 2013-1-12 | NEWSPAPER EDITION
Rescuers dig in the mud for survivors yesterday after a landslide buried 16 households in a mountainous village in southwest China's Yunnan Province. Authorities confirmed last night that 41 people had died and two were injured when the landslide swamped Gaopo Village in Zhenxiong County at about 8:20am. The two injured villagers are in stable condition. Chinese leaders, include Party chief Xi Jinping, have urge all-out efforts to rescue survivors and prevent secondary disasters.
A LANDSLIDE swept through a mountainous village in southwest China yesterday morning, burying dozens of residents and leaving at least 41 people dead.
Rescue work was continuing late last night amid the debris in Gaopo Village, Zhenxiong County, some 550 kilometers northeast of Yunnan's provincial capital city of Kunming.
The landslide hit the village at around 8:20am.
According to initial accounts, 46 residents - 27 adults and 19 children - of Gaopo Village were buried in the landslide, the local civil affairs bureau said. Those buried in the landslide were from 16 of the village's 56 families, the county government said.
Two people, whose injuries are said to be not life-threatening, are being treated in a nearby hospital.
The landslide mass has been estimated at 300 meters long, 80 meters wide and 30 meters deep, said authorities with the county government.
"The landslide, which brought a massive amount of watery mud to the village, buried all of the houses there and created great difficulties for rescue efforts amid low temperatures," said Sun Anfa, the leader of a local rescue team.
More than 1,000 rescuers have arrived at the scene to search for the five missing people with five excavators and four front loader trucks. More rescue workers are rushing in from nearby regions to assist in the search and rescue efforts. All nearby residents facing secondary disaster risks have been relocated to a safe area with temporary shelters, rescuers said.
The provincial civil affairs department has allocated relief materials such as tents, quilts, food and water to the region, where the temperature has been as low as 2 degrees Celsius recently with more cold weather forecast.
Zhenxiong is adjacent to Yiliang County, where 19 people, including 18 primary school students, were killed in a landslide in October.
In September, a series of earthquakes - with the strongest at magnitude 5.7 - struck the region, leaving at least 81 people dead in Yiliang.
A cold front is expected to move toward the region in the coming week, bringing rain and snow to Zhenxiong County, according to Yunnan's meteorological bureau.
Provincial and local meteorological authorities have initiated an emergency response mechanism for major natural disasters.