67 missing in China mudslides

2010-08-18 19:44

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Beijing - Fresh landslides rocked another area of China on Wednesday, sweeping through a mountain town in the southwest of the country after days of heavy rains and leaving at least 67 people missing and cutting off access to the area.

Roads, power and telecommunications were severed when the mud tore through Puladi township in Yunnan province, the official Xinhua News Agency said. Rescue workers have been sent to the township, which is in the mountains bordering Myanmar.

Xinhua said 25 people were hurt in the landslide, nine seriously.

"I suddenly heard rumbling late last night and then rushed to a safe place with fellow villagers," it quoted local resident Yu Zhizhong as saying.

Xinhua said the mudslides were spread about 300 meters (yards) across, and that at least 10 trucks and 21 houses were buried.

Mudslides and floods have killed at least 1 500 people around the country in the last several months.

Mudslides tear bridge away

The provincial civil affairs office sent tents and clothing to the area, but it is not known when the aid and rescue workers will get there.

Xinhua said the mudslides tore away a bridge on the Nujiang river, which saw its water level surge by 6m.

China regularly suffers devastating summer floods, but this year has been the worst in a decade, with cities washed away in the northeast and northwest of the country. The storms have caused tens of billions of dollars in damage.

The worst recent landslides have been in Zhouqu in Gansu province, where at least 1 287 people were killed as a mudslide crashed through the city on August 8. The government says another 457 people are still missing from that disaster.

On Wednesday, Vice-Premier Hui Liangyu urged authorities to focus on resettlement of survivors in Zhouqu. He said more shelter and medical services were needed, according to Xinhua.

Hui said schools should resume classes when the fall semester starts in a few weeks.
 

- SAPA

Read more on:    china  |  asia floods
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