Chinese man in stable but critical condition after being rescued from landslide

09:30, March 14, 2010      

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A 20-year-old man was in stable but critical condition after being rescued from a landslide in northwest China's Shaanxi Province, where he had been buried for 54 hours.

Cao Lele and his younger sister Cao Yanyan were pulled alive early Friday after rescuers heard the young man's cry for help from beneath a collapsed floor in Shuanghuyu Village, Zizhou County.

Cao Lele was still under intensive care at Zizhou County Hospital. He was very weak but could talk with doctors, Han Xuefeng, head of the hospital, said Saturday.

"Cao is still in critical condition, but with further treatment, chances are, he will make it," Han said.

Cao's father, Cao Jinjun, was waiting anxiously outside the ward of his son and constantly asked doctors how his son was doing.

"I feel extremely lucky that my son is still alive. I hope he can get better soon," he said.

Cao Yanyan, 17, died Friday in the hospital after treatment failed. The brother and sister huddled with their mother, who had already died, when they were found.

The rescue work ended Friday after Cao's family was found. The death toll from the landslide that occurred at 1:30 a.m. Wednesday reached 27, including the death of the teenager Friday.

About 90,000 cubic meters of loess earth from a hill side crushed 25 houses, burying 44 people. Six people escaped uninjured.

On Thursday, three of the 10 slightly injured had been discharged from hospital.

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