Worst flooding in west China county in 50 years destroys memorial to 2008 earthquake

The worst flooding in western China's Beichuan county in 50 years has destroyed a high-profile memorial to the 2008 earthquake that ravaged the area.

The 2008 quake in Sichuan province left 90,000 people dead or missing and rendered the former county seat unlivable. The town was abandoned and 27 square kilometers (10 square miles) of ruins was turned into a memorial and museum.

State media reported Wednesday that massive flooding over recent days has immersed the site, collapsing buildings and destroying exhibits.

The flooding also caused the collapse of an almost 50-year-old bridge in a neighboring county, sending six vehicles into the raging waters and leaving 12 people missing.

Since Sunday, flooding in Sichuan has affected 360,000 people, damaging or destroying 300 homes, and forcing at least 6,100 emergency evacuations.