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Burma Quake Update: 74 dead, 111 injured in Shan State

(Updated 5:45 p.m. local time)

New Delhi (Mizzima) – The earthquake in northeastern Burma on Thursday killed at least 74 people and injured 111 with the toll still rising, according to Burma state-run media on Friday afternoon.

A file photo of Tar Lay village on the road to Kyaing Ton. A resident of nearby Tachilek said 11 people died, 45 houses collapsed and four monasteries, including Parhlaing, Fonekha and Naamkham monasteries, were damaged in the village during the earthquake Thursday night. Photo: MizzimaState-run media said the quake’s epicentre was near Loimwe, as scattered reports began to trickle in from the remote region.

Three of the dead were from Tachilek Township, 11 from Ta Lur Township, 29 from Mong Lein village and 22 from Kyaukphyu village, according to a report on state-run TV.

Eight of the injured were from Tachilek Township, 29 from Ta Lur Township, three from Mong Yaung Township, 55 from Kyaukphyu village and 16 from Mong Lein Village.

A total of 224 houses, six apartment blocks, 11 religious buildings and nine government buildings were destroyed in the Naryaung, Mong Yaung, Tachilek and Ta Lur townships, authorities said.

Earlier, local residents told Mizzima that at least 20 people were killed in Mong Pyak in eastern Shan State.

Mong Pyak is about 30 kilometres from Tachilek, the Burmese border town opposite Mae Sai in northern Thailand.

According to residents, the three towns of Mong Lein, Ta Lur and Mong Pyak suffered heavy damage by the earthquake.

A witness told Mizzima that hospitals and government buildings in the
townships collapsed and that many people were injured.

The Ta Lur bridge that links Tachilek and Keng Tung collapsed, he said. The bridge over the Nam Lein River provides the only road link between the two towns.

Concerned about further damage to the bridge, the local authorities have stopped people from using it. Travelers now use ferries to cross the river and pick up a ride with another vehicle on the other side.

The government has sent doctors to attend to the injured and survey the damage.

A Tachilek resident told Mizzima that people were too frightened to sleep in their homes on Thursday night. Further tremors at 6:25 a.m. on Friday drove people out of their homes again.

According to one resident: ‘The Tachilek people did not suffer much but many people from rural areas, such as Mong Ko and Mak Kur Se … were taken to Tachilek hospital’.

On Friday afternoon, the local authorities in the town were warning of another quake, which proved to be a false alarm.

‘The authorities travelled around by car announcing by loudspeaker to live with utmost caution because further earthquakes are likely to hit within the next six hours’, a resident said at about 1 p.m. local time.

About 50 people are still taking refuge on the Shanyoma sports field in the town.

In Tarlay, 11 people died and 45 houses and four monasteries, including Parhlaing, Fonekha and Naamkham, collapsed, sources told Mizzima.

The Ta Lur bridge that links Tachilek and Keng Tung collapsed on Thursday night during the earthquake.  Travelers now use ferries to cross the Nam Lein River and pick up a ride with another vehicle on the other side. Photo : Mizzima/Real NaingA resident of Ta Lur, 26 miles from Tachilek, said the death toll in his area was about 40 people, with some bodies still trapped in rubble and people still missing.

‘There are only 10 houses which were not destroyed by the earthquake’, he said.

NGO workers, police and firemen were working to rescue survivors and remove bodies, he said. The schools were destroyed.

The walls and entrance way to Siri Temple were also destroyed, he said. Currently, he said most villagers were seeking refuge next to the roads. NGO workers are giving villagers food.

He said reports indicated that all the buildings in Mong Lein village, seven miles from Ta Lur, were destroyed.

On the Thai side of the border, one woman was reportedly killed in Mae Sai when a wall in her house fell on her. Mae Sai Hospital is also reported to have been damaged and patients were evacuated from the building.

Last Updated ( Sunday, 27 March 2011 01:04 )  

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