May. 12th, 2009

kajivar: (Disasterporn // Volcano at Night)
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Today marks the one year anniversary of the 2008 Sichuan earthquake (also known as the Wenchuan earthquake).

The 2008 Sichuan earthquake was a deadly earthquake that measured at 8.0 magnitude occurred at 14:28:01.42 CST on May 12, 2008, in the Sichuan province of China. It killed at least 69,000, less than three months before China hosted the world in the 2008 Summer Olympics.

It was also known as the Wenchuan earthquake, after the location of the earthquake's epicenter, Wenchuan County in Sichuan province. The epicenter was 80 kilometers west-northwest of Chengdu, the capital of Sichuan, with a depth of 19 kilometers. The earthquake was also felt in nearby countries and as far away as both Beijing and Shanghai — 1,500 kilometers and 1,700 kilometers away — where office buildings swayed with the tremor.

Official figures (as of July 21, 2008 12:00 CST) state that 69,227 are confirmed dead, including 68,636 in Sichuan province, and 374,176 injured, with 18,222 listed as missing. The earthquake left about 4.8 million people homeless, though the number could be as high as 11 million. Approximately 15 million people lived in the affected area. It was the deadliest earthquake to hit China since the 1976 Tangshan earthquake, which killed at least 240,000 people, and the strongest since the 1950 Chayu earthquake in the country, which registered at 8.5 on Richter magnitude scale. It is the 19th deadliest earthquake of all time.

Strong aftershocks, some exceeding magnitude 6, continue to hit the area even months after the main quake, causing new casualties and damage.

On 6 November 2008, the central government announced that it will spend 1 trillion yuan (about $146.5 billion) over the next three years to rebuild areas ravaged by the earthquake.

National Georgraphic has photos of the immediate aftermath of the quake, as well as one year later.'s Big Picture also has some heartwrenching aftermath pictures, and a set from six months later.

Source: Wikipedia


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