China landslide death toll hits 36 even as search continues

BEIJING • The death toll in a landslide, which buried a village in south-west China, rose to 36, state broadcaster CCTV said yesterday, with 15 people still missing days after the disaster struck.

The state-run People's Daily said rescue work is ongoing at the site in Shuicheng county, Guizhou province, where a thick torrent of mud buried 22 houses in the landslide last Tuesday.

CCTV broadcast footage of rescue workers trying to reach survivors through a huge mound of earth, as well as excavators digging through the collapsed hill.

Two children and a mother with a baby were among those dead.

Official news agency Xinhua said last Saturday night that 40 people had been rescued from the site, according to the local emergency rescue command.

Xinhua said a local school had been set up as an emergency medical and rescue centre, with "multiple rescue teams and experts" still searching for those missing.

The government has earmarked 30 million yuan (S$6 million) for search and rescue efforts in the province, Xinhua reported, as well as the relocation of victims.

Landslides are a frequent danger in rural and mountainous parts of China, particularly after heavy rain.

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 29, 2019, with the headline 'China landslide death toll hits 36 even as search continues'. Print Edition | Subscribe