27 March 2009
This is the third of my five sets of images of the impact of the Wenchuan earthquake in Sichuan, China. The first two are as follows:
Part 1: Beichuan town
Part 2: The Tangjiashan landslide
Part 3 (this part): Hanwang town
Part 4: The Mianyuanhe area
Part 5: The Xingyiu area
In this set of images I feature the town of Hanwang, on the edge of the mountains. The location of Hanwang is shown below (click on the image for a better view in a new window):
Hanwang is a smallish town by Chinese standards – before the earthquake it had a population of 60,000 people. It was largely unremarkable, being best known perhaps for a huge steam turbine factory around which the town has grown. Hanwang suffered very strong shaking in the earthquake. In the town centre, in fact immediately in front of the turbine factory, there is a clock tower. The clock stopped in the earthquake and now stands witness to the time that the earthquake struck:
Note the shut up shops on the far side of the tower. In fact, this central part of the settlement has been totally abandoned and is now like a ghost town with just a few people passing through on their way to somewhere else. The newer buildings mostly remained standing but have been so badly damaged that they are not usable. They have been stripped bare and the windows have been removed:
Meanwhile, on the edge of the town the bridge over the river is damaged and under repair, meaning that the traffic has to use a temporary road across the river bed. Note the holes by the side of the road – a huge amount of material is being removed from the rivers to be crushed and used as aggregate during reconstruction.
Your comments and corrections are welcome.