Second natural disaster hits China; 32 hurt

China landslide sichuan gengdi

At least nine people were killed and 164 other injured after a 7-magnitude natural disaster jolted a remote but popular tourist destination in China's southwest last night, the state media reported on Wednesday. It was also close to the Jiuzhaigou nature reserve, a tourist destination. ACT Alliance works in areas affected by the quake, and is assessing the impact of the disaster to better understand the needs and vulnerabilities.

The death toll in the quake in Sichuan has risen to 19, with 247 injured, including 40 seriously, authorities said.

The USGS recorded a second 6.3-magnitude quake near the Kazakhstan border in far northwestern China on Wednesday morning, local time, more than 1,300 miles from Jiuzhai Valley.

The top-level national emergency response continued amid ongoing aftershocks on Thursday, involving at least four helicopters, 90 vehicles, hundreds of soldiers, medical personnel and more than 1,200 rescuers, state television China Central Television (CCTV) reported.

The Jiuzhaigou region is forecast to receive slight to moderate rainfall in the coming days, the provincial meteorological bureau said. Jiuzhaigou airport was operating as normal after the runway was checked for damage, the report added. Xinhua says more than 30,000 tourists have been evacuated from Jiuzhaigou.

This morning, Xinhua reporters saw tourists sitting in front of their hotels, wrapped in quilts. "Some things fell off the table", he said.

A French man and a Canadian woman suffered light injuries, Xinhua reported.

The tourists were moved to safer areas which included the cities of Mianyang and Chengdu. The China Earthquake Networks Center said the quake had at magnitude of 7.0 and a depth of 20 kilometers.

Firefighters are working to secure the safety of tourists and residents stranded in areas where roads have been blocked by fallen rocks and landslides.

The aftermath at Sparkling Lake in Jiuzhaigou National Park, a destination frequented by tourists, demonstrates the extent of the impact, with post-earthquake photo showing the body of water almost dried up.

The massive natural disaster struck at 9:19 PM (local time) Tuesday and the epicenter was monitored at a depth of 20 km, it said. The jolt lasted about 20 seconds, it said.

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