China / Society

County begins relief efforts after fire

By Hu Yongqi and He Na (China Daily) Updated: 2014-01-14 09:43

County begins relief efforts after fire

Residents search through the ruins of their homes. Qu Mingfei / for China Daily

The government of the Diqing Tibetan autonomous prefecture said 343 houses were destroyed by Saturday's fire in Dukezong.

By Sunday night, the local authorities had rented 13 hotels to accommodate 532 people. A working group consisting of police officers and doctors remained on standby for any further emergencies and 1,000 elderly residents were offered free health checks.

The Shangri-La county government deployed 246 local officials to provide one-on-one aid for those left homeless by the blaze.

The provincial government allocated 5 million yuan ($827,000) in relief funding on Saturday; 400 families will receive 10,000 yuan and a further 333 will get 3,000 yuan.

Diqing, one of five major Tibetan habitats, has long been famous for extreme winter weather. Residents of neighboring towns provided clean water and Tibetan-style food for the displaced.

Sun Nuo, 28, from Dukezong Ancient Town, was among those who lined up for food outside the Tianjie Shenchuan hotel in the downtown. The hotel has invited Tibetan architects to advise on reconstruction and repairs.

"My family is extremely sad, but we are confident our homes will be repaired and restored," said Sun.

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