Nine people were buried in the collapse of a group of homes in eastern China on Thursday morning, a Chinese rescue official and state media reported.
Four homes tumbled in the city of Wenzhou in Zhejiang province, just south of the commercial hub of Shanghai, the Xinhua News Agency said.
Xinhua said crews were working carefully because the collapsed homes, each between four and five stories tall, were attached to buildings that had remained standing. Huang Guoku, a traffic control official in Wenzhou's Baizhuangji township, confirmed the Xinhua report and said as many as 300 rescuers were on the scene.
No immediate cause was given for the collapse and Xinhua said there had been no reports of extreme weather in the area over recent days.
In October, 22 people were killed in Wenzhou when a cluster of decrepit homes collapsed, apparently because of poor construction and the building of additional levels on unstable foundations.