Death toll in China landslide rises to 20

NEW DELHI: The death toll from a landslide in China’s Yunnan province rose to 20, according to the country’s state media while rescuers are still trying to locate dozens of missing people.
The rescue teams are working day and night to find the missing people at the site of the landslide in Zhenxiong County, state-owned China Central Television (CCTV) reported on Tuesday.
One of the rescuers said that they couldn’t use the large machine due to the unstable soil, according to a report from local media outlet The Cover, owned by the Sichuan Daily Newspaper Press Group.
“If the excavation is unloaded below, the top may continue to collapse. It is difficult to carry out large-scale mechanical operations, and it is very difficult to rescue on site,” the worker was quoted as saying in the report.
The landslide hit the China on Monday and CCTV reported that at least 47 people from 18 households were reported missing. Eight of the missing were found dead on Monday afternoon, according to Zhaotong Daily, a local state-owned media outlet.
Another two people were hospitalized for head and body injuries, the national health commission said.
The landslide hit two villages in the southwestern city of Zhaotong at about 5:51 a.m. (2151 GMT), covering houses in brown mountain soil at the foot of a hill, CCTV reported.
“The mountain just collapsed, dozens were buried,” a man surnamed Gu, who witnessed the landslide, told the state-owned TV station for the neighbouring province of Guizhou. Gu said four of his relatives were buried under the rubble.
“They were all sleeping in their homes,” he said.
Over 500 people have been evacuated from their homes.
Footage posted on social media by a local broadcaster showed emergency workers in orange jumpsuits and helmets picking through piles of collapsed masonry amid towering mountains dusted with snow.
Landslides are common in Yunnan, a remote region of China where steep mountain ranges butt against the Himalayan plateau.
(With inputs from agencies)
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