Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Sichuan earthquake, one year later

(Photo and story from China Daily)

Top leaders joined millions of Chinese to mourn quake victims Tuesday afternoon on the one year anniversary of the massive earthquake in southwest Sichuan province.

President Hu Jintao and Vice Premier Li Keqiang attended a ceremony in the quake's epicenter Yingxiu Town, Wenchuan County.

All those attending the commemoration stood in a silent tribute to the victims of the earthquake, which left nearly 87,000 people dead or missing.

Ten floral baskets were put in front of a symbolic clock, with its hands stopped at 2:28 pm, May 12, 2008, the exact time when the 8.0-magnitude deadly tremor struck.

U.S. Geological Survey damage estimate:
  • At least 69,195 people killed, 374,177 injured and 18,392 missing and presumed dead.
  • More than 45.5 million people in 10 provinces and regions were affected.
  • At least 15 million people were evacuated from their homes.
  • More than 5 million were left homeless.
  • An estimated 5.36 million buildings collapsed.
  • More than 21 million buildings were damaged.
  • The total economic loss was estimated at 86 billion US dollars.

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