Chinese Premier vows "no casualty" during Tangjiashan quake lake inspection
www.chinaview.cn 2008-06-06 02:34:45   Print

Special report: Reconstruction After Earthquake

Premier Wen went to oversee the safety of the Tangjiashan quake lake Thursday.
"It's our obligation to protect the people's safety..." Wen said.
It's the third time for the premier to visit the earthquake areas since May 12.

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao (front C) is helped as he inspects the drainage of the Tangjiashan quake lake in southwest China's Sichuan Province on June 5, 2008. (Xinhua/Liu Weibing)
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    MIANYANG, Sichuan, June 5 (Xinhua) -- Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao went to oversee the safety of the Tangjiashan quake-formed lake by helicopter on Thursday afternoon.

    "Now it's a critical moment for the Tangjiashan quake lake, and the most important thing is to ensure there is no casualty of the people," Wen said.

    Wen inquired about the water level and future rainfalls. "The lake condition is even more complicated than expected, but we must remove the hidden threat as soon as possible, because many evacuees are still living inside tents. It's very hot. There may be more difficulties as time goes."

    "It's our obligation to protect the people's safety. As long as the Tangjiashan quake lake still poses a threat, our task is not over," Wen said.

    He urged the troops to devote themselves to coping with new challenges.

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao (front L) speaks as he inspects the drainage of the Tangjiashan quake lake in southwest China's Sichuan Province on June 5, 2008. (Xinhua/Liu Weibing

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao (front L) speaks as he inspects the drainage of the Tangjiashan quake lake in southwest China's Sichuan Province on June 5, 2008. (Xinhua/Liu Weibing)
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    After days of continuous work, soldiers and technicians have dug out a 400-meter-plus channel to drain the water in the quake lake. And more than 200,000 people downriver have been relocated.

    Wen also visited the Russian aircrew who joined local forces in the fight against the quake lake, expressing appreciation for the mand the Russian government and people as well.

    He arrived in Mianyang of southwest China's quake-hit Sichuan Province Thursday afternoon and immediately boarded a helicopter to Tangjiashan.

    It's the third time for the premier to visit the earthquake areas since May 12.

    The possibility of the Tangjiashan "quake lake" bursting increased on Thursday as water levels rose steadily.

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao (front R) listens as he inspects the drainage of the Tangjiashan quake lake in southwest China's Sichuan Province on June 5, 2008. (Xinhua/Liu Weibing

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao (front R) listens as he inspects the drainage of the Tangjiashan quake lake in southwest China's Sichuan Province on June 5, 2008. (Xinhua/Liu Weibing)
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    A headquarters spokesman warned late on Wednesday that the chances of bursting were increasing due to uncertainties, including aftershocks, rain on the upper reaches and the instability of the mud and rock dam.

    The May 12 quake triggered massive landslides in Sichuan, blocking the flow of rivers and creating more than 30 unstable "quake-formed lakes" that threaten millions of people downstream.

    The 8.0-magnitude quake centered on Wenchuan County, about 100 km southwest of Beichuan, has left more than 69,000 people dead, about 18,000 missing and millions homeless. More than 10,000 aftershocks have been reported since May 12.

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao (R) shakes hands with a crew member of the Russian aircrew who joined local forces in the fight against the quake lake as he inspects in the Tangjiashan quake lake in southwest China's Sichuan Province on June 5, 2008. (Xinhua/Liu Weibing)
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Flood warning issued as China's main "quake lake"nears drainage point

    MIANYANG, Sichuan, June 5 (Xinhua) -- The possibility of flooding from the Tangjiashan "quake lake," caused by China's May 12 earthquake, increased Thursday even as water levels rose steadily to the point where engineers believe they may be able to open a drainage sluice.

    The water level at Tangjiashan Lake in Beichuan County, Mianyang City, southwestern Sichuan Province, had risen to 738.81 meters by 5 p.m. on Thursday, 0.9 meters higher than that of 5 p.m. Wednesday. It was still 1.19 meters below the drainage sluice, according to the lake control headquarters.   Full story

Tangjiashan quake-lake poses risk to oil pipeline

    BEIJING, June 5 (Xinhua) -- China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) said on Thursday the Tangjiashan quake-lake in Sichuan Province may destroy the company's pipeline in the area.

    The water reserve of the quake-lake was more than 200 million cubic meters as of Thursday. The probable bursting of the lake would pose risks to the Lanzhou-Chengdu-Chongqing oil pipeline. It is 60 km from the lake.  Full story

Decision time near to drain China's quake-formed lake as water rises

    CHENGDU, June 4 (Xinhua) -- The plan to drain the Tangjiashan "quake lake" in southwest China's Sichuan Province is due to be implemented by Thursday or thereafter, with the trapped water volume having risen to 211.6 million cubic meters as of 2 p.m. Wednesday.

    The volume was 200.8 million cubic meters at 8 a.m. Tuesday, according to the quake control and relief headquarters with the Ministry of Water Resources (MWR).

    The water level has been moving higher. It stood at 737.78 meters at 2 p.m. Wednesday, up 0.25 meters from 8 a.m. The water level was just 1.37 meters from the lowest point of the blockage.  Full story

Editor: Yan Liang
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