The epicenter of the seismic disturbance, categorized as magnitude 5.9, materialized in Gansu Haidong Qinghai China Claimed 116 Lives.
Amidst the frigid grasp of northwest China, tragedy unfolded as seismic convulsions claimed the lives of no fewer than 116 individuals, reported by state media on Tuesday. Rescue endeavors, battling against freezing conditions, hastened to commence the arduous task of unearthing survivors buried beneath the debris.
The toll in Gansu province stood at a grievous 105 fatalities and nearly 400 wounded, the aftermath of a robust and shallow tremor that struck the region around the midnight hour. Additional casualties, amounting to 11, and a further 100 injured, were documented in the city of Haidong, situated in the adjoining province of Qinghai, as relayed by state broadcaster CCTV.
The seismic upheaval brought about the collapse of residences and inflicted substantial damage, prompting a chaotic exodus of citizens seeking refuge in the streets, as elucidated by the state news agency Xinhua.
Visual records from CCTV unveiled personal belongings strewn amidst the ruins of a dwelling that succumbed to the tremors. The exigency of rescue operations was emphasized early Tuesday, with Chinese President Xi Jinping advocating for “all-out efforts” in the search and relief endeavors.
The high-altitude locale, grappling with sub-zero temperatures, urged rescuers to remain vigilant against potential secondary calamities, as per CCTV reports.
The epicenter of the seismic disturbance, categorized as magnitude 5.9 by the US Geological Survey, materialized in Gansu near the Qinghai border, housing the city of Haidong.
This focal point lies approximately 100 kilometers (60 miles) southwest of Lanzhou, the capital of Gansu province.
Discrepant data surfaced as Xinhua reported the quake at magnitude 6.2, resonating as far as Xi’an in northern Shaanxi province, a considerable 570 kilometers (350 miles) away.
Subsequent to the initial quake, multiple minor aftershocks ensued, with authorities cautioning of potential tremors exceeding a magnitude of 5.0 in the ensuing days.
In a separate occurrence on Monday morning, a seismic event registering at magnitude 5.2, as reported by USGS, manifested further northwest in Xinjiang province.
The repercussions were evident with disrupted power and water supplies in some villages proximate to the epicenter, as noted by Xinhua.
Glimpses from the disaster zone, broadcasted by CCTV, depicted residents seeking warmth around fires while emergency services erected tents.
CCTV disclosed that over 1,400 firefighters and rescue personnel had been dispatched to the calamity-stricken region, with an additional 1,600 poised for deployment.
Essential supplies, encompassing potable water, blankets, stoves, and instant noodles, were mobilized to the affected area. V
Visual documentation portrayed emergency vehicles traversing snow-laden highways with flashing lights, while rescue personnel clad in overalls stood shoulder-to-shoulder in the trucks.
Scenes unfolded with them aligning in ranks to receive instructions and meticulously sifting through debris by torchlight, unfurling orange stretchers for the casualties.
Evacuations unfolded in Gansu, with hundreds relocated, as the seismic event occurred at a shallow depth precisely at 11:59 pm local time on Monday (1559 GMT), as asserted by the USGS, which subsequently revised the magnitude downward from its initial assessment of 6.0.
Earthquakes, a recurring phenomenon in China, had left an indelible mark in recent memory, including a 5.4-magnitude tremor in eastern China in August, causing injuries and the collapse of numerous structures.
Sichuan province experienced a 6.6-magnitude earthquake in September 2022, resulting in nearly 100 casualties. The seismic cataclysm of 2008, registering at 7.9 magnitudes, claimed the lives of over 87,000 individuals, including 5,335 schoolchildren.