Sichuan struck again

Updated: 2013-04-21 09:37

By Hu Yongqi in Ya'an, Sichuan, and Peng Yining, Zhao Yinan in Beijing (China Daily)

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Earthquake: President Xi Jinping and Premier Li Keqiang pledge to put full resources of the State into search-and-rescue mission after the people of the province face new tragedy.

When the light bulb hanging from the ceiling suddenly danced violently and bowls on the kitchen shelf smashed into pieces on the floor, Chen Yuanyuan stumbled into the bedroom where her 1-year-old daughter was still asleep.

"I realized immediately it was an earthquake," Chen, 23, said in Lushan county, Ya'an, in Sichuan province.

"All I was thinking at the time was how to save my daughter, no matter what."

Holding her daughter firmly, Chen rushed with her husband onto the street as the walls of her house cracked open.

"I went through the earthquake five years ago," she said, referring to the devastating quake that left about 87,000 people dead or missing on May 12, 2008. The epicenter - Wenchuan county - is about 200 kilometers from Ya'an. "It was like living through the nightmare again, only worse."

The magnitude-7 earthquake hit Ya'an city in Southwest China's Sichuan province on Saturday morning.

A total of 161 people were confirmed dead as of press time, according to the China Central Television.

More than 5,800 people were injured, including some 400 severely hurt. It is estimated that about 1.5 million people have been affected, according to the Sichuan provincial government.

The earthquake occurred at 8:02 am with Lushan county, the epicenter, hit hardest.

The quake struck at a depth of only 13 km, according to the China Earthquake Administration.

President Xi Jinping pledged the full resources of the State to help in the search-and-rescue operation, according to Xinhua News Agency.

Sichuan struck again 

An injured man in Lushan county is saved by troops. Photos by Jiang Hongjing and Wang Dan / Xinhua, Zhang Xiaoli / for China Daily 

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