January 12, 1998 in Nation/World

Devastation From Chinese Quake Worse Than Thought

Compiled From Wire Services

Scrambling to head off frostbite, Chinese aid workers rushed winter overcoats, quilts and tents Sunday to tens of thousands of earthquake victims in northern China who were cast into the bitter cold when their houses were reduced to rubble.

The devastation from Saturday’s quake in Hebei province was worse than originally thought, with about 11,440 people injured - nearly 2,500 more than previous estimates, Xinhua, China’s state-run news agency, reported. About 1,200 of the injured were seriously hurt.

The death toll from the temblor that rocked scores of villages in two counties near a section of the Great Wall rose to 50 from 47, said Tan Xianfeng, an official at the State Seismological Bureau.

The magnitude-6.2 quake struck when many people were indoors preparing lunch, and was so strong that it rattled apartment buildings in Beijing, about 150 miles to the south.

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