658 people evacuated after massive landslides in China | world | Hindustan Times
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658 people evacuated after massive landslides in China

world Updated: May 15, 2007 07:55 IST

All 658 residents of Central China's Hubei province have been evacuated following landslides which caused havoc in the region.

The landslides began on Thursday in Qingtaiping township, Badong County, which is near the Qingjiang river, a tributary of the Yangtze river, after the water level in a reservoir rose to 290 metres.

Eighteen houses collapsed and Qiaohe river, a major tributary of Qingjiang, was blocked by mud and rocks. No casualties have been reported, Xinhua news agency reported on Thursday night.

"When the water level in the reservoir rises to about 310 metres, more than 26 million cubic metres of mud and rock will start to move in the next few days," a local official said.

Electricity and shipping services have been cut off in order to minimise the impact of the disaster. The local government is closely monitoring the area on the opposite side of the river.

The disaster occurred in a sloping area near Shuibuya reservoir. The rising water level loosened foundations at the foot of the slope, preparing the stage for the mud-rock flow, geological experts said.