More than 100 feared dead in China landslide

At least six people were killed and over 100 others remained missing after a mountain village was today buried under tonnes of rocks following a massive landslide in southwest China's Sichuan Province, the worst such disaster in the country in recent times. "My wife and I climbed over, took the baby, and got out".

Mao County, or Maoxian, is home to about 110,000 people, according to the government's website. Hundreds of police, military and firefighters were taking part in the rescue.

State media had earlier stated that 141 people were believed to be buried under the rocks but that number was then revised down.

No sign of the village could be seen in aerial footage, which showed a grim and grey rock-strewn landscape covering the area where it once existed by a river.

Landslides are a regular danger in mountainous regions of China, especially during heavy rains.

Chinese President Xi Jinping has ordered "all-out efforts" to save those buried, China's People's Daily tweeted.

A smaller, second landslide caused huge rocks to fall onto the village, which made it more hard for heavy machinery to get to the scene, police team leader Wang Yongbo told CCTV.

China's weather observatory said more heavy rain was expected in parts of Sichuan and other south-western provinces.

"It's a seismic area here".

A massive natural disaster hit the Sichuan province in 2008, which left about 90,000 dead or missing, and the BBC notes it also caused a landslide that killed 37 tourists. "There's not a lot of vegetation", Chen said.

Experts told CCTV that the landslide was likely triggered by rain.

Tao Jian, director of the local weather service, said the 2008 natural disaster had weakened the mountain and that "a weak rain can provoke a geological catastrophe".

More heavy rain is forecast in parts of Sichuan Province, amid fears a dam is at risk of collapsing.

According to Xinhua, floods as a result of the rain during the past two days in the central provinces of Hunan and Hubei have affected about 466,500 people, and claimed at least two lives.

It added that three persons belonging to the same family were pulled out five hours after being buried by the landslide without serious injuries, though another member remains trapped under the debris.

More than 70 were killed in a landslide in the southern commercial hub of Shenzhen in December 2015, caused by the improper storage of waste.

  • Zachary Reyes