It is estimated that between 3 and 5 thousand people have been killed by an earthquake in Beichuan County, Sichuan Province, China. That is about one in ten residence of this county.

ADDED: This number is increasing quickly.

In at least three cases, schools appear have collapsed trapping hundreds of students. About 900 students were trapped in a school in Dujiangyan city.

Teenagers buried beneath the rubble of the three-storey Juyuan Middle School building were struggling to break free, while others were crying out for help, state news agency Xinhua reported.

Parents were watching as cranes excavated the site. Villagers rushed to help with the rescue.

Two girls said they escaped because they had “run faster than others”.
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It is said that the earthquake was felt as far awaya sPakistan, Vietnam and Thailand.

[more info]

Comments

  1. #1 Dunkleosteus
    May 12, 2008

    Now they say at least 8,500 has died… yet not a day has been since the quake. Wouldn’t be surprising if the total number of casualties will be much higher still. One can only hope that this number is already near the total number of casualties.

  2. #2 the real cmf
    May 12, 2008

    I spent the morning with a crying friend…her whole family is in Chengdu for her brothers wedding. He was married yesterday, and today the earthquake.

    Now the good news: when she finally was able to get in ( some phoneline disruption, etc.) her family is alright…so I told her it is likely her brothers fault for being overly enthusiastic on his wedding night, and explained plate shift…she cheered up real quick ;-)

  3. #3 the real cmf
    May 12, 2008

    “There were fears that China’s programme to save the endangered giant panda may have been affected”

  4. #4 jmusarra
    May 12, 2008

    Every time I see a casualty estimate for a very recent disaster, natural or otherwise, I remember back to Christmas 2004 – I was up late, and saw the first report on some news site about the earthquake and resultant tsunami off Indonesia. It was a major catastrophe, they said, with “hundreds dead”. And of course, we all know where that number ended up.

    With early estimates of �9,000, I certainly worry that this event will turn out to be much, much worse.

  5. #5 Keanna
    May 13, 2008

    I heard about the earthquake yesterday. i live in england, so i did not feel it but i did a couple of stories and some research on it.

    i feel sorry for the victims and wish them well and i pray for the dead. thank you

  6. #6 themadlolscientist
    May 13, 2008

    Given China’s track record of underreporting death tolls, I shudder to think what the actual numbers are. My inclination is to multiply any offical counts by 2 at the very least.

    it is likely her brothers fault for being overly enthusiastic on his wedding night

    g00d anser! teh real cmf is win dis thred!11!!!

    Glad to hear your friend’s family is OK!

  7. #7 themadlolscientist
    May 13, 2008

    Oops, I meant “official.” Sorry – I can’t bleeping type!

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