According to the Sichuan provincial government on Tuesday morning, the Wenchuan earthquake has caused cracks on the surface of the dam of the Zipingpu Hydropower Station. Some walls of the plant and other buildings have collapsed, and some are partly sunk. The whole installation is out of commission, Xinhua reported.
Located at the junction of Dujiangyan City and Wenchuan County on the upper Minjiang River, the Zipingpu Hydropower Plant was one of the first 10 landmark projects of the Western Development plan. It is also the principal project in the province's 10th five-year plan. The station was brought into service in 2006.
At 2:28 p.m. on Monday an earthquake measuring 7.8 on the Richter scale pounded Wenchuan County in the Tibetan-Qiang Autonomous Prefecture of Aba, Sichuan Province, leveling some 500,000 homes in the affected areas and leaving at least 9,219 people dead in the eight affected provinces and municipality including Sichuan, Gansu, Shaanxi, Chongqing, Yunnan, Shanxi, Guizhou and Hubei, the Ministry of Civil Affairs confirmed.
(China.org.cn May 13, 2008)