Beijing [China], September 6 (ANI): The strong 6.8 magnitude earthquake that hit the Sichuan province in China on Monday has so far claimed 65 lives while leaving 248 people injured and 12 missing, local media reported on Tuesday.
According to China Earthquake Networks Center, a total of 10 aftershocks of 3.0-magnitude or above have been recorded, including one earthquake of 4.0 to 4.9 magnitude, nine earthquakes of 3.0 to 3.9 magnitude, and the largest aftershocks of 4.2 magnitudes so far.
Among 65 deaths, 37 are in Garze Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, where Luding county is located and 28 in Ya'an city, as of 7:00 am on Tuesday and more than 50,000 people have relocated, the Global Times reported.
As per the Ministry of Transport, over 350 people have been stranded on Luding-Shimian Expressway, comprising 336 construction workers and 20 managers.
Expressway tollbooths opened up over 700 special channels for earthquake relief. All service areas along the Chengdu-Luding Expressway have been fully stocked with epidemic prevention supplies, oil products, food materials and other emergency supplies.
More than 1,900 officers, armed police and soldiers of the People's Liberation Army PLA Western Theater Command rushed to the earthquake-hit area and arrived at the epicentre area at 8 am on Tuesday, engaging in the transport of the injured, road dredging, victim search and other rescue work, Global Times reported.
As a result of the earthquake, the power supply in the province was cut off, however, State Grid Sichuan Electric Power Company said that nearly 22,000 households in the earthquake-stricken area have been restored after overnight emergency repair.
Chinese President Xi Jinping requested for all-out relief efforts to prioritise saving lives and minimizing casualties after a 6.8-magnitude earthquake jolted Luding county, Global Times reported.
China's Red Cross Society has initiated a Level-III emergency response, with the first batch of relief materials consisting of 320 tents, 2,200 relief packages, 1,200 quilts and 300 folding beds dispatched to the affected area.
The Red Cross has also sent a working group there to help with the relief and rescue work.
Sichuan province has activated the second-highest level of emergency response for the earthquake and more rescue forces are rushing to the epicentre area.
The earthquake jolted Luding County at 12:52 p.m. Monday (Beijing Time), according to the China Earthquake Networks Center (CENC).
The epicentre was monitored at 29.59 degrees north latitude and 102.08 degrees east longitude, at a depth of 16 km, the CENC said.
The epicentre is 39 km away from the county seat of Luding and there are several villages within the 5-km range around the epicentre. The tremor was felt in Chengdu, capital of Sichuan, which is 226 km away from the epicentre.
The quake was felt around 200 kilometres (125 miles) away in the provincial capital, Chengdu, where a COVID-19 outbreak has restricted most of its 21 million residents to their compounds under China's strict "zero-COVID" policy. (ANI)