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Super Eeathquake Occured In China Today.


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Magnitude 7.5

Date-Time

* Monday, May 12, 2008 at 06:28:00 UTC

* Monday, May 12, 2008 at 02:28:00 PM at epicenter

* Time of Earthquake in other Time Zones

Location 31.084°N, 103.267°E

Depth 10 km (6.2 miles) set by location program

Region EASTERN SICHUAN, CHINA

Distances 90 km (55 miles) WNW of Chengdu, Sichuan, China

150 km (95 miles) WSW of Mianyang, Sichuan, China

360 km (220 miles) WNW of Chongqing, Chongqing, China

1545 km (960 miles) SW of BEIJING, Beijing, China

Location Uncertainty horizontal +/- 6.5 km (4.0 miles); depth fixed by location program

Parameters NST=206, Nph=206, Dmin=>999 km, Rmss=1.61 sec, Gp= 29°,

M-type=moment magnitude (Mw), Version=7

Source

* USGS NEIC (WDCS-D)

Event ID us2008ryan

20080512_7e00b35898852b4baec0MUBLZKGpezp7.png

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They've raised the severity, to 7.8

BEIJING, May 12 AFP/Reuters - China has deployed troops to help victims of a 7.8 magnitude earthquake that struck the southwest today, with at least four children killed and 100 injured when two schools collapsed.

The earthquake was so strong it was felt as far west as Thailand's capital Bangkok, some 3,300km away, where office buildings swayed for several minutes. It also swayed buildings in the Taiwanese capital of Taipei, and was felt in Hong Kong.

China had sent military troops to help with disaster relief work, the state-run Xinhua news agency said.

Xinhua said at least four children died in a suburb of southwest China's Chongqing municipality when two schools collapsed.

More than 100 children were injured, it added, quoting the local government.

Authorities warned another earthquake measuring between two and six on the Richter scale could hit Beijing late today, and have urged people to take precautions.

The quake could hit between 10pm and midnight (1200-1400 AEST Tuesday), the People's Daily reported on its website, quoting the China Earthquake Administration.

``It is hoped that everyone will take precautions beforehand,'' the paper said.

Today's earthquake hit Sichuan province, less than 100km from the provincial capital of Chengdu, followed by a series of smaller tremors.

Premier Wen Jiabao was flying to Chengdu, a fast-growing metropolis of 10 million people and famous for its Giant Panda Breeding Research Base, state television said.

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Yes, we felt it here in Beijing, some more than others depending on what building you were in/floor level you were on. Many office buildings were immediately evacuated, mostly in case of major aftershockes, so the sidewalks outside were like a giant street party for awhile. No damage this far away from the epicenter, although when it first occurred, nobody was sure if the epicenter was nearby and we were headed for another Tangshan 1976-style disaster. When we heard it was centered in Sichuan province, it was clear it could be bad if it was big enough to be felt all the way in Beijing. Not until a little later did we hear reports that it could be felt as far south as Bangkok.

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Yes, we felt it here in Beijing, some more than others depending on what building you were in/floor level you were on. Many office buildings were immediately evacuated, mostly in case of major aftershockes, so the sidewalks outside were like a giant street party for awhile. No damage this far away from the epicenter, although when it first occurred, nobody was sure if the epicenter was nearby and we were headed for another Tangshan 1976-style disaster. When we heard it was centered in Sichuan province, it was clear it could be bad if it was big enough to be felt all the way in Beijing. Not until a little later did we hear reports that it could be felt as far south as Bangkok.

the earthquake can be felt as far as pakistan, thailand, vietnam and taiwan! Beijing has mobilized the army to the province, and the Premier has headed off there to direct the rescue efforts.

God bless those people at the center of the quake.!

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The reports on CNN and AP are pretty grim. Saying around 5,000 dead and 900 students trapped in the remains of their school.

From the AP:

Toll from China quake estimated at 3,000 to 5,000

By CHRISTOPHER BODEEN, Associated Press Writer 10 minutes ago

BEIJING - A massive earthquake struck central China on Monday and state media reported that as many as 5,000 people were killed in a single county while nearly 900 students were trapped under the rubble of their school.

The official Xinhua News Agency said 80 percent of the buildings had collapsed in Beichuan county in Sichuan province after the 7.8-magnitude quake.

Xinhua reported that 3,000 to 5,000 people had died in Beichuan, which has a population of 160,000, raising fears the overall death toll could increase sharply. Another 10,000 people were believed to be hurt.

The earthquake sent thousands of people rushing out of buildings and into the streets hundreds of miles away in Beijing and Shanghai. The temblor was felt as far away as Pakistan, Vietnam and Thailand.

Four of the dead were ninth-grade students killed when their high school collapsed, Xinhua said. Photos showed heavy cranes trying to remove rubble from the ruined school. Xinhua did not say how many of the students were feared dead.

It said its reporters in Juyuan township, about 60 miles from the epicenter, saw buried teenagers struggling to break loose from underneath the rubble of the three-story building "while others were crying out for help."

Two girls were quoted by Xinhua as saying they escaped because they had "run faster than others."

The earthquake comes less than three months before the start of the Beijing Summer Olympics, when China hopes to use to showcase its rise in the world.

Shanghai's main index inched up Monday, but the advance was capped by worries over inflation and potential damage from the earthquake. Analysts said that shares of companies located in the Sichuan region may fall in coming sessions due to the quake.

It struck in the middle of the afternoon when classes and office towers were full, about 60 miles northwest of Chengdu. There were several smaller aftershocks, the U.S. Geological Survey said on its Web site.

Calls into the city did not go through as panicked residents quickly overloaded the telephone system. The quake affected telephone and power networks, and even state media appeared to have few details of the disaster.

"In Chengdu, mobile telecommunication convertors have experienced jams and thousands of servers were out of service," said Sha Yuejia, deputy chief executive officer of China Mobile.

Although it was difficult to telephone Chengdu, an Israeli student, Ronen Medzini, sent a text message to The Associated Press saying there were power and water outages there.

"Traffic jams, no running water, power outs, everyone sitting in the streets, patients evacuated from hospitals sitting outside and waiting," he said.

Xinhua said an underground water pipe ruptured near the city's southern railway station, flooding a main thoroughfare. Reporters saw buildings with cracks in their walls but no collapses, Xinhua said.

The earthquake also rattled buildings in Beijing, some 930 miles to the north, less than three months before the Chinese capital was expected to be full of hundreds of thousands of foreign visitors for the Summer Olympics.

Many Beijing office towers were evacuated, including the building housing the media offices for the organizers of the Olympics, which start in August. None of the Olympic venues was damaged.

"I've lived in Taipei and California and I've been through quakes before. This is the most I've ever felt," said James McGregor, a business consultant who was inside the LG Towers in Beijing's business district. "The floor was moving underneath me."

In Fuyang, 660 miles to the east, chandeliers in the lobby of the Buckingham Palace Hotel swayed. "We've never felt anything like this our whole lives," said a hotel employee surnamed Zhu.

Patients at the Fuyang People's No. 1 Hospital were evacuated. An hour after the quake, a half-dozen patients in blue-striped pajamas stood outside the hospital. One was laying on a hospital bed in the parking lot.

Skyscrapers in Shanghai swayed and most office occupants went rushing into the streets.

In the Taiwanese capital of Taipei, 100 miles off the southeastern Chinese coast, buildings swayed when the quake hit. There were no immediate reports of injuries or damage.

The quake was felt as far away as the Vietnamese capital of Hanoi, where some people hurried out of swaying office buildings and into the streets downtown. A building in the Thai capital of Bangkok also was evacuated after the quake was felt there.

A magnitude 7.8 earthquake is considered a major event, capable of causing widespread damage and injuries in populated areas.

The last serious earthquake in China was in 2003, when a 6.8-magnitude quake killed 268 people in Bachu county in the west of Xinjiang.

China's deadliest earthquake in modern history struck the northeastern city of Tangshan on July 28, 1976, killing 240,000 people.

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It is reported at least 8,500 people may have died in China this morning - absolutely awful news. Thank goodness China is already showing far more willingness to help its citizens than Burma has in the last week.

Good luck China :(

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Terrible news. I just hope the death toll doesn't get any higher, though that seems unlikely.

They beleive many thousand people could be burried in the rubbles in the Sichuan province.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/asia-pacific/7396650.stm

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Horrible news. My deepest sympathies to the peoples concerned, and best of luck for the rescue teams.

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BEIJING, May 12 AFP - Sports venues built for the Beijing Olympics were undamaged by the 7.8-magnitude earthquake that struck southwest China today, a Games spokesman said.

``They are earthquake proof to a high degree and no damage was done,'' said Sun Weide, deputy director for the Olympic media and communications department.

All 31 venues and related sites in Beijing and facilities in six host cities around China were unaffected by the major quake that was felt as far away as Hong Kong and Taipei.

A tremor of magnitude 3.9 was registered in Beijing at the same time as the major quake, according to the state-run Xinhua news agency, and saw office workers fleeing in panic from some high-rise buildings.

However, Sun said officials at Olympic Tower, the headquarters of the Beijing Olympic organising committee in northwestern Beijing, worked through the quake and felt nothing.

Sun said the fact that Beijing was in an earthquake zone was taken into consideration during the construction of venues such as the new National Stadium known as the Bird's Nest, and other key structures including the National Aquatics Centre, or Water Cube.

``These are very safe venues,'' he said.

Li Jiulin, engineer-in-chief for the National Stadium project, told Xinhua the venue had been designed to withstand an eight-magnitude quake.

He said more than 3,000 workers were carrying out finishing touches to the project when the quake struck.

The Bird's Nest is scheduled for completion later this month and will host the four-day China Open athletics competition on May 22.

AFP

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Isn't Sichuan (四川省) province home of the world's only true Giant Panda sanctuary? If so, then I hope the earthquake didn't make things worse for its survival, even though the area has recorded the most births of Giant Pandas ever.

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Isn't Sichuan (四川省) province home of the world's only true Giant Panda sanctuary? If so, then I hope the earthquake didn't make things worse for its survival, even though the area has recorded the most births of Giant Pandas ever.

Yes, the Wolong Reserve, which is very close to the epicenter area. However, I suspect the earthquake would have little direct impact on the Pandas, which live in a remote and rural area and fortunately are not subject to buildings collapsing on them or disrupted utility lines like we humans! It's theoretically possible landslides could disrrupt their food supply, but evidence of that would take some time to see. Haven't heard any reports yet about the conditions of the research and support buildings at Wolong.

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BEIJING, May 12 AFP - Sports venues built for the Beijing Olympics were undamaged by the 7.8-magnitude earthquake that struck southwest China today, a Games spokesman said.

``They are earthquake proof to a high degree and no damage was done,'' said Sun Weide, deputy director for the Olympic media and communications department.

All 31 venues and related sites in Beijing and facilities in six host cities around China were unaffected by the major quake that was felt as far away as Hong Kong and Taipei.

A tremor of magnitude 3.9 was registered in Beijing at the same time as the major quake, according to the state-run Xinhua news agency, and saw office workers fleeing in panic from some high-rise buildings.

However, Sun said officials at Olympic Tower, the headquarters of the Beijing Olympic organising committee in northwestern Beijing, worked through the quake and felt nothing.

Sun said the fact that Beijing was in an earthquake zone was taken into consideration during the construction of venues such as the new National Stadium known as the Bird's Nest, and other key structures including the National Aquatics Centre, or Water Cube.

``These are very safe venues,'' he said.

In my experience, both the foreign consulting and the Beijing structural engineers are very conservative and take earthquake-resistance quite seriously in all modern public buildings. Hopefully the contractors building the facilities did the same! As a professional in this field (architecture and construction) in Beijing, I'd feel pretty confident about being in the new facilities such as Birds Nest, Water Cube, etc. in the event of an earthquake--just beware of breaking glass, as anywhere. Where a LOT of work was done on structural improvements and earthquake-resistance was in the older facilities such as Workers Stadium, Capital Indoor Stadium, etc. where this was sorely needed to bring these up to modern, safer standards. However, I'm personally less confident about these escaping major damage in the event of a major earthquake like a 7.0+ This won't keep me from attending events in the older facilities during the Games. All the steel-structure temporary facilities (Baseball, Beach Volleyball, Archery, etc.) should be fine even in very major earthquake.

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Unfortunately, this is a story growing worse by the hour, with casualties numbering above 10,000 now and hundreds trapped in collapsed structures. Add to that a chemical leak from a damaged plant and you have a perfect storm of a disaster.

Hopefully, China will be more receptive to offers of aid than the junta in Myanmar have been.

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What wrong with China ? I remembered when China would be host of 2004 Woman World Cup, there is SARS epidemic in China, made that tournament move to US, now in 2008, when China will be the host of 2008 olympic, there are several case, like epidemic and earthquake.... :(, Hope God bless China and all the victim in there

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Oh, it wasn't a joke at all, CAF. Don't let this maryjane control things. I thought that Puppy's contest is very well timed.

So if we didn't joke about it, it would not have happened? Please.

At this moment, you are sayin I tend to control, control what? If I am able to control the increasing death of the children, I am happy to control it.

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Yes, the Wolong Reserve, which is very close to the epicenter area. However, I suspect the earthquake would have little direct impact on the Pandas, which live in a remote and rural area and fortunately are not subject to buildings collapsing on them or disrupted utility lines like we humans! It's theoretically possible landslides could disrrupt their food supply, but evidence of that would take some time to see. Haven't heard any reports yet about the conditions of the research and support buildings at Wolong.

It was just reported that the 68 pandas in the reserve are also save.

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It was just reported that the 68 pandas in the reserve are also save.

No, the 68 pandas that are safe are at the Giant Panda Breeding Research Base, which is by Chengdu and which is what most tourists/visitors will be familiar with. What I'm talking about is the more distant and more extensive Wolong Nature Reserve, which is a UNESCO World Biosphere location and where the pandas live in the wild. There is also a research base there that is primarily used by visiting zoologists and other experts. It is about 3 hours from Chengdu by road, which may now be cut off. So far, nobody seems to have heard from anyone at Wolong, as normal communications are out. But this pales in comparison by the much greater disasters in the populated areas north and west of Chengdu.

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No, the 68 pandas that are safe are at the Giant Panda Breeding Research Base, which is by Chengdu and which is what most tourists/visitors will be familiar with. What I'm talking about is the more distant and more extensive Wolong Nature Reserve, which is a UNESCO World Biosphere location and where the pandas live in the wild. There is also a research base there that is primarily used by visiting zoologists and other experts. It is about 3 hours from Chengdu by road, which may now be cut off. So far, nobody seems to have heard from anyone at Wolong, as normal communications are out. But this pales in comparison by the much greater disasters in the populated areas north and west of Chengdu.

I see... i double-checked the website and newsreport, the 68 pandas are indeed referred to the base research center... but there are reports at the same time that the panda cubs in Wolong would be relocated to a safer location.

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