Deadly Earthquake Strikes Northwest China

    Photo: Wikimedia Commons

    The Facts

    • At least 131 people were killed and hundreds more were injured in a (PRC-reported) 6.2-magnitude earthquake in northwestern China late Monday. Authorities say that infrastructure such as electricity, water, and transportation systems were damaged.

    • The earthquake hit close to midnight (local time) on Monday, in the Gansu province near the border with Qinghai — causing significant damage to both provinces. The epicenter of the quake struck in a remote mountainous region that is one of the poorest areas of China; the quake triggered landslides leading to an entire village being partially buried in silt.

    The Spin

    Anti-China narrative

    Poor construction and a lack of resources set this remote region of China up for disaster. Unfortunately, many of the buildings in the area were not built to withstand earthquakes. As a consequence, the response and road to recovery will be extremely challenging.

    Pro-China narrative

    The PRC government is going all out in its rescue efforts following this disastrous earthquake. China has developed state-of-the-art disaster relief systems including highly-trained personnel and vital equipment. This is a tragedy that is being addressed by the full weight of these robust capabilities.

    Nerd narrative

    There's a 50% chance that at least 74.9K people will die as a result of the most deadly earthquake from 2020 - 2029, according to the Metaculus prediction community.

    Establishment split



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