Strong gales kill 7, injure 37 in SW China

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CHENGDU, April 6 (Xinhua) -- Strong winds, accompanied by heavy downpour, killed seven people and injured 37 others in southwest China's Sichuan Province, local authorities said on Monday.

The gales, with the maximum speed of 38.5 meters per second, swept through Wusheng County, Guang'an City, from 10 p.m. of Saturday to 7 a.m. of Sunday, a spokesman with the county's publicity office told Xinhua.

Twenty of the injured are being hospitalized, the spokesman said, without elaborating on precise causes of the casualties.

The disaster damaged 14,500 rooms and 3,000 hectares of farmland, as well as affected traffic, power supply and communication, inflicting direct economic losses of about 120 million (about 19.2 million U.S. dollars).

Life in the disaster-hit area has since returned to normal.

Editor: Luan