30 dead in China forest fire
Beijing, Apr 1 : At least 30 people, including 27 firefighters, were killed while battling a forest blaze in remote mountains in southwest China, the state media reported on Monday.
The firefighters were sent to put the fire which broke out on Saturday in Liangshan Yi autonomous prefecture, Southwest China's Sichuan province, China Daily quoted the PLA Daily, the official organ of the Chinese military as saying.
About 30 people have been unaccounted for since Sunday afternoon after a sudden change in wind direction caused "a huge fireball", according to authorities in Sichuan's Liangshan Yi Autonomous Prefecture.
Local authorities have dispatched 689 people to quench the blaze which broke out at about 6 pm at an altitude of about 3,800 meters.
Firefighters are still trying to contain the blaze
A team sent by the Ministry of Emergency Management has arrived in Muli County in Liangshan to coordinate the rescue efforts.
A separate forest fire in the northern province of Shanxi was brought under control on Sunday after burning for two days, the official Xinhua news agency said.
No casualties were reported from that fire, but at least 9,000 people were evacuated from their homes.