/ 21 May 2008

Woman rescued nine days after China quake

A woman was rescued on Wednesday after spending nine days in the tunnel of a power plant after China’s devastating earthquake, the state-run Xinhua news agency said.

Zeng Changhui had been stuck in the water tunnel of the Shifang area hydropower plant since the 7,9-magnitude earthquake struck on May 12, Xinhua said.

She was airlifted from the township of Hongbai to a nearby hospital, Xinhua said.

She suffered fractures to her right arm, ribs and lower back, but her life was not in danger, said Pu Jinhui, a doctor who treated her.

The city of Shifang was near the epicentre of the powerful quake and suffered major damage.

It was the first such rescue reported on Wednesday, although no details were given as to how big the tunnel was or how badly it had been damaged.

State media said that two people were pulled out of the rubble on Tuesday, eight days after the earthquake, including a woman who survived on rainwater.

Such miracle stories have provided a morale boost as China recovers from its worst earthquake in a generation.

But the pace of such rescues has slowed down with experts warning that it remains nearly impossible for someone to survive so long under rubble. — AFP