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Yunnan quake rescue continues amid aftershocks

2014-10-08 13:11 Web Editor: Mo Hong'e

Rescuers are racing against time to search for survivors amid frequent aftershocks in southwest China's Yunnan province, where a strong, shallow earthquake killed at least one person on Tuesday night.

Yunnan governor Li Jiheng is currently taking command of the rescue team. He arrived at the epicenter of the 6.6-magnitude earthquake at 3:50 am in Yongping township, Jinggu county.

By Wednesday morning, the quake, which struck at 9:49 pm Beijing Time, has left 324 people injured and forced 124,6000 people from their homes.

No major geographic hazards have appeared.

Rescuers said the region experienced little to no rain in the past few days, helping reduce the risks of landslides and other geographical disasters following the earthquake.

However, they are worried tremors may have cracked a dam at the Changhai Reservoir 10 km upstream of Yongping township.

Governor Li urged the water resources department to take emergency measures to eliminate the possible risk.

On Wednesday, Chen Deliang, education chief of Jinggu County, said classes have been suspended in the county, as 100 schools were damaged in the earthquake.

"An estimated 170,000 square meters of school houses need repairs," Chen said without giving a deadline when they would reopen.

He said local authorities will help build makeshift houses so classes can resume as soon as possible.

It's the second strong quake to hit the province in two months. A 6.5-magnitude quake struck the county of Ludian on Aug 3, killing at least 615 people. 

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