In Xinjiang, new houses ‘saved lives’
Improved structures stood up to strain as quake rattled region on Wednesday
the epicenter, many of the injured were still living in old houses and waiting to move into earthquake-proof ones. The new houses remained standing during the earthquake, Han said.
“Many casualties during earthquakes are caused by collapsed buildings, so the earthquake-proof houses have indeed saved many lives,” she said.
Initiated and funded by the central and regional governments, Xinjiang began to introduce earthquake-proof housing projects around the region, with special focus on rural areas, in 2003.
Although the epicenter was about 383 km from Urumqi, many people in the city felt its power.
People in Ily Kazak autonomous prefecture, which borders Bortala, also felt strong tremors.
“The house was shaking for at least 30 seconds. I could hear a roaring sound coming out of the earth,” said Zhao Xiao of Ily city. The regional government said about 600 houses and livestock sheds were damaged in Ily.
People in Urumqi, Karamay, Shihezi and Changji in Xinjiang also reported feeling the earthquake. the
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