Chinese rescuers scoured through rocks on
Saturday in a frantic search for more than 140
people feared buried after a landslide smashed
through a mountain village in southwest
A couple and a baby were rescued and taken to
hospital after 46 homes in the village of Xinmo
were swallowed by huge boulders when the
side of a mountain collapsed, according to the
local Maoxian, or Mao county, government.
A fourth survivor was found but rescuers were
still trying to get to him.
At least 141 people were missing, the People’s
Daily said, citing a Maoxian government
spokesman hours after the 6:00 am landslide.
The landslide blocked a two-kilometre (one-
mile) stretch of river and 1.6 kilometre of
Rescuers used ropes to move a massive rock
while dozens of others, aided by dogs, searched
the rubble for survivors, according to videos
posted online by the Maoxian government and
state broadcaster CCTV.
Bulldozers and heavy diggers were also
deployed to remove boulders, the images
showed. Medics were seen treating a woman
on a road. Hundreds of police, military and
firefighters were taking part in the rescue.
Wang Yongbo, one of the officials in charge of
rescue efforts, said the vital signs of one of the
survivors “are weak”.
“It’s the biggest landslide in this area since the
Wenchuan earthquake,” he said, referring to
the disaster that killed 87,000 people in 2008 in
a town in Sichuan.
Local police captain Chen Tiebo said the heavy
rains that hit the region in recent days had
triggered the landslide.
“There are several tonnes of rock” over the
village, he told the state broadcaster CCTV.
“It’s a seismic area here. There’s not a lot of
vegetation,” Chen said.
Trees can help absorb excess rain and prevent