Over 20,000 people have been moved to temporary shelters amid the threat of landslides and buildings collapsing in the mountainous region of Sichuan province, state media report.
Heavy rains are complicating earthquake recovery efforts in southwestern China, where the death toll from Monday’s disaster has risen to 82.
Chinese authorities on Thursday used drones, satellites, and helicopters to establish a “life channel” to reach disconnected areas in southwestern Sichuan province which was hit by a 6.8-magnitude earthquake on Monday.
The latest data shared by Chinese daily Global Times showed the death toll in the quake-hit regions of Garze Tibetan Autonomous region in Sichuan climbing to 82. Over 250 people were found injured.
An intense search is being carried out to find the missing residents.
According to China Earthquake Networks Center, the quake hit Luding county in the Garze Tibetan Autonomous region at a depth of 16 kilometers (9 miles) on Monday afternoon.
It is the deadliest since the 2008 earthquake when thousands of people were killed. The same province was hit by another strong earthquake in 2017, killing 25 people.
READ MORE: Death toll spikes from strong China quake as rescue operations continue
Using satellites to locate people
Over 10,000 rescuers including soldiers, police, firefighters, and medical personnel supported by nine helicopters are engaged in rescue and relief operations.
Chinese authorities used at least 10 satellites to locate the people in disconnected regions as over 50,000 others were moved to safer places.
Minor aftershocks rattled many areas around Luding county.
The earthquake badly damaged houses, historic sites, roads, water facilities, and hydropower stations, and affected electricity supplies and telecommunications.
A 104-year-old historic site, where late Chinese leader Mao Zedong lived and held meetings, was also damaged due to the earthquake.
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