Southwest China Landslide, 14 Dead. PHOTO/Reuters
BEIJING – Landslide that hit Sichuan province, China southwest, Sunday (4/6/2023), killed 14 people. It was also reported that 5 people are still missing and efforts are being made to rescue them by the SAR team.
The mountain in the region collapsed at 6 a.m. at the state forestry station in Jinkouhe, near the city of Leshan, the local government said in an online statement.
“As of 3:30 p.m., the bodies of 14 victims have been found, while five people are still missing,” said a statement from the local government, as quoted by AP.
Authorities dispatched more than 180 people and a dozen rescue and recovery equipment to the site, according to the statement. “Currently, search and rescue work is underway,” the statement continued.
The site is in a mountainous region about 240 km south of the provincial capital, Chengdu. Landslides are a frequent hazard in China’s rural and mountainous areas, especially during the rainy summer months.
Contacted by AFP, an official at the Jinkouhe publicity department declined to provide further comment about Sunday’s landslide.
The settlement of about 40,000 people is nestled between verdant mountains and a wide river and its economy mainly runs in forestry, power generation, agriculture and other industries.
Remote and heavily forested, large parts of Sichuan are highly disaster-prone. Extreme weather triggered a series of landslides in the province in 2017, including one that completely buried the mountain village of Xinmo, burying more than 60 homes.
In 2019, heavy rains again caused multiple landslides, including one that buried sections of the track that were being repaired and those working on them. The province is also seismically active and regularly experiences deadly earthquakes.
A 7.9 magnitude earthquake in 2008 left more than 87,000 people dead or missing, including 5,335 school students. Although China has strengthened safety protocols in its extractive industries in recent years, accidents still occur frequently.