More Than 130 Lives Lost in China’s Deadliest Quake in Nearly 10 Years

More than 131 lives were lost, and hundreds sustained injuries in the powerful earthquake that struck northwest China’s Jishishan county in Gansu province.

The quake, the deadliest in almost a decade, occurred late Monday night, demolishing homes, disrupting infrastructure, and leaving thousands displaced. 

Rescue operations faced sub-zero temperatures as teams worked tirelessly to locate survivors trapped under debris.

As of Tuesday morning, the official death toll stood at 113 in Gansu, with 772 reported injuries and nearly 15,000 houses collapsed. 

The neighboring Qinghai province reported 18 fatalities, 198 injuries, and 16 individuals missing. 

The quake, measuring 5.9-magnitude, shook the region just before midnight, causing widespread destruction and triggering subsequent aftershocks.

Rescue efforts were compounded by the challenging weather conditions, with temperatures expected to plummet to -19 degrees Celsius in affected areas. 

Electricity was restored in Gansu and Qinghai provinces, crucial for heating amid the freezing temperatures.

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China’s Deadliest Quake in a Decade

more-than-130-lives-lost-china-deadliest-quake-nearly-10-years
More than 131 lives were lost, and hundreds sustained injuries in the powerful earthquake that struck northwest China’s Jishishan county in Gansu province.

The quake’s epicenter, located on the border between Gansu and Qinghai, experienced multiple aftershocks, adding to the region’s distress.

Survivors, enduring the bitter winter cold, sought refuge outdoors, while rescue teams faced difficulties due to disrupted power and communication lines. 

Videos and images on social media captured families huddling together in open spaces, wrapped in blankets. 

Rescue workers, firefighters, police officers, and soldiers numbering at least 4,000 were deployed to the affected areas, along with essential supplies.

Chinese leader Xi Jinping urged all-out efforts for search and rescue operations, acknowledging the challenging weather conditions in the high-altitude region. 

The Finance Ministry and Emergency Management Ministry allocated 200 million yuan ($28 million) in natural disaster relief funds for the affected provinces.

This tragic earthquake, China’s deadliest in nearly a decade, underscores the nation’s vulnerability to seismic events, particularly in the southwestern regions where tectonic plates converge. 

As rescue operations continue, China faces the aftermath of this devastating quake, reminiscent of past seismic tragedies in the country’s history.

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