Landslide in Northwest China

  • Aid agency rushes relief items, including bottled water, quilts and toys for the children, to the disaster area
  • Families begin difficult task of identifying the bodies of their loved ones in the makeshift morgue
  • Zhouqo County, China, August 11, 2010—As rescuers race against time to search for more than 1,000 people buried in a massive landslide in northwest China, World Vision

    “Walls of mud buried many homes, giving survivors no chance to bring out belongings as they raced to safety,” said Victor Kan, Humanitarian and Emergency Affairs (HEA) Director of World Vision China. “The mudslides also destroyed most of the water sources for families here; water is one of the most urgent needs for survivors right now.”

    While the relief team conducts its assessment of the disaster, World Vision will also be distributing bottles of drinking water and toys for the children. More than 1,000 quilts are also on their way to the disaster area.

    “We will continue to work with our local counterparts to ensure smooth coordination as we mount a relief response in Gansu,” said Kan.

    As part of its ongoing relief efforts in China, World Vision is also working to provide food and non-food items to 55,000 survivors of the floods that hit the country in June, some of the worst flooding there in decades. As of August 6, World Vision has already distributed relief goods to about 25,000 people. A total of 280 tons of rice, 3,000 quilts and hundreds of toys were provided to survivors in Jiangxi province. Other relief items will be distributed in Hunan province, another area hard-hit during the flooding. deployed an assessment team to Zhouqo County in Gansu province to identify the immediate needs of survivors. The five-person team says reaching the disaster area will be a big challenge as some roads are obstructed with mud and debris and others are under tight travel restrictions for emergency personnel. The team expects the trip to take up to seven hours. Local reports estimate the death toll at just over 700 people, while more than 1,000 remain missing and over 1,200 people have been rescued from the mudslides. Survivors have now begun the difficult task of identifying the bodies of their loved ones in the makeshift morgue.

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