Quake Survivors, Rescuers Struggling Amid Chilly Night
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Most of the survivors have to stay in the open area overnight after a 7.1-magnitude quake toppled houses, cut off power and first-aid materials supply in northwest China's Qinghai Province Wednesday while rescuers face difficulties in searching for the buried.
Rescuers have set up more than 40 tents for survivors in the Gyegu Town, near the epicenter in the Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture of Yushu in southern Qinghai. But the effort seems far less than enough for the area inhabited by some 100,000 population.
Many people sought temporary shelters in buildings that remained unaffected by the tremor.
In the yard of Yushu's Sports Committee, nearly 1,000 people were sitting or lying on the ground in sheer darkness. Some wrapped themselves up with quilts taken out from the debris.
Some brought their own tents and others turned on the lights of motorcycles.
"I'm hungry and thirsty, we've been waiting for help since the morning," said Zhaxi Toinzhub.
The woman said her three children were still buried in the rubble.
The National Meteorological Station forecast Wednesday that temperatures at night may hit minus 3 degrees Celcius at night and 15 degrees Celcius in the daytime in the coming days.
The town would see strong winds and sunny weather in the coming days, providing favorable conditions for rescue operation.
(Xinhua News Agency April 15, 2010)