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China Quake Kills 32, Destroys 258,000 Homes

( [email protected] ) Sep 01, 2008 04:34 AM EDT
BEIJING (AP) — Chinese rescue teams carrying tents, quilts and sacks of rice rushed to reach survivors of an earthquake that killed at least 32 people, turned tens of thousands of homes into rubble and cracked reservoirs.
Li Fucui, 47, cries in front of the debris of her collapsed house, which buried her brother-in-law, in Huili County, Sichuan Province Reuters

BEIJING (AP) — Chinese rescue teams carrying tents, quilts and sacks of rice rushed to reach survivors of an earthquake that killed at least 32 people, turned tens of thousands of homes into rubble and cracked reservoirs.

The 6.1-magnitude quake Saturday struck Sichuan province along the same fault line as a May 12 earthquake that killed nearly 70,000.

Saturday's quake killed 27 people in Sichuan and five in the neighboring province of Yunnan, the official Xinhua News Agency said early Monday, citing the Ministry of Civil Affairs. The quake destroyed 258,000 homes, damaged major bridges and cracked three reservoirs, the agency said.

Another 467 people were injured after the earthquake hit 31 miles southeast of Panzhihua city in the southwestern corner of Sichuan, the report said.

Dozens of evacuees had gathered Sunday at a primary school field in Panzhihua, state broadcaster China Central Television showed. Wrapped in quilts, the evacuees, including children and the elderly, lay on plastic sheets and mats on the ground.

About 152,000 people were evacuated and relief efforts were under way, despite being hampered by heavy rains and the region's rugged terrain, Xinhua said. It said 6,200 tents, 3,500 quilts and 55,000 pounds of rice had been sent to the quake zone.

Since the 7.9-magnitude temblor May 12, the region has been hit by scores of aftershocks.

A woman who answered the phone at the Sichuan provincial seismological bureau said the region was hit by about 300 aftershocks on Sunday morning. She declined to give her name, saying she was not authorized to speak to the media.

The China Earthquake Administration recorded a 5.6-magnitude aftershock later Sunday in the same location as Saturday's quake.

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