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China says troops rush to plug dangerous cracks in dam!!!

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User ID: 425806
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05/14/2008 10:10 AM
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China says troops rush to plug dangerous cracks in dam!!!
[link to news.yahoo.com]

DUJIANGYAN, China - Chinese state media says troops are rushing to plug "extremely dangerous" cracks in a dam upriver from an earthquake-hit city.

Xinhua News Agency said Wednesday that 2,000 troops had been sent to work on the Zipingku Dam, upriver from Dujiangyan in Sichuan province.

Dujiangyan saw buildings collapse and services cut off in Monday's magnitude 7.9 quake earthquake.

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05/14/2008 11:45 AM
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Re: China says troops rush to plug dangerous cracks in dam!!!
[link to www.npr.org]
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05/14/2008 11:46 AM
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Re: China says troops rush to plug dangerous cracks in dam!!!
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05/14/2008 11:49 AM
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Re: China says troops rush to plug dangerous cracks in dam!!!
China: Troops plug dam as death toll soars

[link to www.cnn.com]

SICHUAN PROVINCE, China (CNN) -- China's death toll from a massive earthquake soared by thousands Wednesday as troops rushed to plug "severe cracks" in a dam upriver from one of the hardest hit cities.

About 2,000 troops were sent to work on a dam near the epicenter of Monday's earthquake, state-run media reported.

The Zipingpu dam, upriver from Dujiangyan in Sichuan province, was in "great danger," the Xinhua news agency reported.

China.org said that the 7.9-magnitude earthquake had caused "severe cracks" in the dam.

The "plant and associated buildings have collapsed and some are partly sunk," it said of the hydropower station.

The Ministry of Water Resources said that an irrigation system and Dujiangyan City -- which has a population of about 630,000 -- "would be swamped," if major problems emerged at the dam, China.org said.

Xinhua earlier reported that the death toll had risen to 14,866. An unofficial tally of deaths in individual communities -- as reported by the news agency over several days -- puts the toll at 19,565.

Xinhua also said nearly 26,000 people were still buried under debris and another 14,000 missing. More than 64,000 people sustained injuries.

Rescuers announced a piece of good news Wednesday, hailing the rescue of an eight-months pregnant woman as a "miracle," AP reported.

Zhang Xiaoyan spent 50 hours trapped in debris after an apartment building collapsed in Dujiangyan. VideoWatch Zhang Xiaoyan being rescued »

Meanwhile, Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao headed to the quake's epicenter in Wenchuan county Wednesday afternoon, according to the Xinhua news agency.

"Time is life," said Wen, who is heading up China's relief effort.

Local officials said the quake killed more than 7,700 people in the town of Yingxiu -- about three-quarters of the population, according to Xinhua. VideoWatch children being pulled from the rubble »

Yingxiu is in Sichuan province, where 20,000 Chinese soldiers have been mobilized for rescue and recovery, state media reported. Another 30,000 were en route to the region.

Thousands of troops are traveling by train -- on rail lines that are also transporting supplies. VideoWatch report on plight of survivors »

"The top priority for the railway network in China is to deliver disaster-relief troops, personnel and goods to the affected area as soon as possible," said Wang Yongping, spokesman for the Ministry of Railways. He said many passenger trains would be diverted to ferry troops. View a map of the affected area »

Rubble hides quake's terrible toll

Wednesday brought new horrors from the rubble.

At one three-story school in Sichuan's Qingchuan county 178 students were confirmed dead after the building collapsed, a local official said.

Rescuers found at least 500 dead Tuesday in the Chinese district at the epicenter of the quake. Heavy rain, collapsed bridges and damaged roads complicated efforts to get troops and aid workers to the worst-hit towns. VideoWatch rescuers dig for victims »

"We will do our utmost to reopen the links to epicenter as soon as possible -- so as to restore the transportation links to the whole province," said Feng Zhenglin, China's vice minister of transport.

The epicenter of Monday's quake was in Wenchuan county, Sichuan, about 1,500 km (960 miles) southwest of Beijing.

During a visit to a school in Shifang, where more than 100 children were trapped beneath rubble, Wen promised that saving lives was a top priority.

"We will put our best efforts forward to save all those alive who can be saved," he said. "This disaster has all tested us. We all have to band together and have confidence and push forward." VideoWatch search continue for quake victims »

He also visited a stadium in the city of Mianyang, where more than 10,000 people had been temporarily resettled, Xinhua reported.

"The transportation of food must be faster," the news agency quoted him as telling government officials. "Children are short of food." VideoWatch how China's reaction to this crisis compares to previous disasters »

Soldiers dig with their hands

Hundreds of soldiers and disaster workers descended on Wenchuan, many of them digging by hand, according to the disaster relief headquarters of the Chengdu Military Area Command. Soldiers said only 3,000 of the town's 12,000 residents survived the quake.

More than 70 percent of the town's roads were damaged, and almost all bridges had collapsed, they reported.

All the beds were filled at Sichuan University Huaxi Hospital, one of the largest in the provincial capital of Chengdu. VideoWatch survivors cope with with living outside »

Nurses said the most common injuries were broken bones, bruises and scrapes. State media reported thousands of victims had sought care at the hospital, where medical supplies were running low.

Fear of becoming trapped during an aftershock led about 200 people to sleep outside in cots, on lawn chairs and on the ground outside the hospital in an area intended for bicycles.

At the Third Military Medical University Southwest Hospital, state-run media reported that nurses and doctors were donating their own blood.

Millions of homes destroyed

China is no stranger to natural disasters: A 1976 earthquake here killed more than 250,000 people. But analysts said the Chinese response to Monday's quake had been the most transparent of any disaster, with state media frequently updating casualty tolls and deploying troops rapidly to the worst-hit areas. View a photo wall of damage and rescue efforts »

Li Chengyun, vice governor of Sichuan, said about 3.5 million homes were destroyed in the province. David Jones, an English teacher in the city of Chengdu, said residents were camping out on riverbanks, in parking lots and other open spaces, despite "terrible" weather.

"People are doing everything they can to stay outside," he said. "In a lot of cases, they can't return to their buildings."

He said survivors were lining up to donate blood and remained calm, but appeared "extremely tired."

"The people here have been really helpful to each other, making sure everybody has supplies," he said. "I haven't seen any price-gouging. The mood here has gone from shock, fear, to tiredness."

Wenchuan is the refuge for much of China's panda population, and the State Forestry Administration said the 67 captive pandas among the more than 130 pandas in the Wolong Giant Panda Reserve were not injured. However, the caregivers were worried about the bamboo leaf supply.

User ID: 421073
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05/14/2008 11:49 AM
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Re: China says troops rush to plug dangerous cracks in dam!!!
it would seem to me that you would have to fix the cracks on the water side of the damn for it to do much good

now all they need is a heavy rain upstream from there
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