Rescue squads urged to look after students' needs

By Wu Jiachun and Li Fangchao (China Daily)
Updated: 2007-06-05 06:56

Post-earthquake recovery and rescue operations should focus on helping students who are planning to take the upcoming college entrance examination, officials said.

The earthquake, the largest in a decade, toppled or damaged most of the houses in Ning'er County. And it came just three days before the national college entrance examination, which is slated for June 7.

The three-day exam is widely considered a decisive moment in any student's life, but especially for students from this impoverished county in Southwest China's Yunnan Province.

In recognition of this situation, Kong Chuizhu, Yunnan's vice-governor, urged rescue workers to create a stable environment for the 679 students from the county who will sit for the exam on Thursday.

"They are the hopes of their families," he said.

Communications have been restored, and the power was turned on in parts of the county by press time yesterday.

Kong called on rescue workers to set up temporary houses with adequate water and electricity for the test-takers.

These shelters can house teachers at night, he said.

And with many residents still living in tents or out in the open, Kong ordered health workers to watch out for cases of heat stroke and illnesses caused by rotten food.

(China Daily 06/05/2007 page3)

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