BEIJING — More than 120 were buried by a landslide that caused huge rocks and a mass of earth to come crashing into homes in a mountain village in southwestern China early Saturday, officials said.
The Xinhua News Agency reports 15 people have been found dead as workers retrieved the bodies from the debris on Saturday. The news agency says no new signs of life have been found. About 1,000 workers with life-detection instruments are searching for survivors.
The landslide, which came from a mountain, engulfed a cluster of 62 homes and a hotel in the village of Xinmo in Mao County at about 6 a.m., the Sichuan provincial government said. Officials said 1.6 kilometers, about 1 mile, of road were buried in the disaster.
“It’s the biggest landslide to hit this area since the Wenchuan earthquake,” Wang Yongbo, an official leading one of the rescue efforts, told state broadcaster China Central Television. Wang was referring to China’s deadliest earthquake this century, a magnitude 7.9 temblor that struck Sichuan province in May 2008, killing nearly 90,000 people.
The provincial government said more than 120 people were buried by the landslide. Rescuers pulled out three people, two of whom had survived, the official Sichuan Daily newspaper said on its microblog. The paper also said a family of three, including a month-old baby, managed to escape just as the landslide started to hit their house.
Qiao Dashuai told CCTV that the baby saved the family because he was woken up by the child’s crying and was going to change the baby’s diaper when he heard a noise that alerted him to the landslide.
“We heard a strange noise at the back of our house, and it was rather loud,” Qiao said. “Wind was coming into the…