Earthquake kills at least 25 in SW China

Updated: 2011-03-11 07:36

By Guo Anfei and Chen Xin (China Daily)

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Earthquake kills at least 25 in SW China

Soldiers help to give an injured man an IV drip in Yingjiang county of Yunnan province on Thursday. At least 24 people were killed and 245 injured in a 5.8-magnitude earthquake that had hit the county at 12:58 pm. [Photo/Xinhua]

KUNMING - At least 25 people were killed and 250 others injured after an earthquake jolted Yingjiang county in Southwest China's Yunnan province on Thursday, local authorities said.

Many houses collapsed in the 5.8-magnitude quake, which hit the county near the border with Myanmar at 12:58 pm.

The tremor led to a power outage, although telecommunication services continued functioning in Yingjiang, Wei Gang, the county head, told Xinhua.

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Photos being circulated on websites showed local buildings collapsed or toppled, houses cracked, debris scattered on the streets, vehicles damaged by falling debris, people crying and injured people lying in the streets waiting for medical treatment.

The rescue operation was bolstered by support from more than 400 soldiers, according to a Xinhua report.

They worked with local residents to lift debris and search for survivors, pictures showed.

A total of 2,000 tents, 3,000 quilts, 3,000 coats and other relief materials were taken to the disaster-hit region, according to the Yunnan provincial civil affairs department.

Classes at primary and middle schools in the county were suspended after the quake, local officials said.

The county, sitting on an earthquake-prone belt, has suffered about 1,200 minor tremors during the past two months, officials said.

The epicenter of the latest quake was determined to be at a depth of 10 km below Shiming village, about 2 km away from the county seat.

Three aftershocks, measuring up to a magnitude of 4.7, jolted the county within 10 minutes after the first tremor.

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