BEIJING – Heavy rains sparked landslides in an earthquake-shattered region of northwestern China, killing at least nine people and burying another eight.
The landslides struck just south of the city of Dingxi where Monday's earthquake left 95 dead, five missing and more than 800 people in hospital.
The worst landslide buried 13 people in Nanyu village and nine bodies have been recovered, the official Xinhua News Agency said Friday. Rescue efforts are under way in the neighboring village of Yongguang, where four people were buried and are listed as missing, the report said.
Local officials reached by phone said they had no information about dead or missing
The area along the Yellow River has rolling hills of loose soil blown south from the Gobi desert. Thunderstorms have loosened the terraced hillsides that were made unstable by the quake.
About 123,000 people were affected by the quake, with 31,600 moved to temporary shelters, the provincial earthquake administration said on its website. Almost 2,000 homes were destroyed and about 22,500 damaged, it said.
Urban areas where buildings are more solid were spared major damage, unlike the traditional mud and brick homes in the countryside.
The government's earthquake monitoring center said the quake was magnitude 6.6, while the U.S. Geological Survey said it was 5.9. Measurements can often vary, especially if different monitoring equipment is used.