Red Cross responds to earthquake in Lushan, China

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On April 20, 2013, a magnitude 7.0 earthquake struck Lushan in China’s southwestern Sichuan province. At least 100 people have been reported killed, more than 2,000 injured, and around 120,000 people have been forced from their homes. The Red Cross response was immediate. Teams have already arrived with food, water, medicine and rescue equipment. In addition, the Red Cross Society of China has deployed 10,650 family kits, 8,000 quilts, 7,000 jackets and 2,500 tents to support survivors.

The province was badly hit by an earthquake in 2008, killing tens of thousands and destroying thousands of homes. Red Cross workers say that the newer structures, built with greater earthquake resistance after that disaster are largely standing, at least in the county town, although many are cracked. Buildings more vulnerable to collapse appear to be those older tile and timber homes which withstood the 2008 quake.

Local authorities have also said that several dams and reservoirs in the area have developed cracks and are being checked to evaluate the risk.