6.4 magnitude earthquake hits northwest China, dozen of houses damaged
by Anadolu Agency
BEIJINGJan 21, 2016 - 12:00 am GMT+3
by Anadolu Agency
Jan 21, 2016 12:00 am
More than 50 houses were damaged after a magnitude-6.4 earthquake hit China's northwest Qinghai province, causing residents to panic and run into the streets in freezing temperatures.
State media reported that the tremor at 1.13 a.m. Thursday (1713GMT Wednesday) caused cracks in the walls of at least 20 of the 54 buildings impacted in Menyuan Hui Autonomous County but no casualties were reported.
Ma Wulong, a local resident, told Xinhua new agency, "the tremor lasted one to two minutes... with a rumbling noise."
The earthquake was also felt in neighboring Gansu province as well as Qinghai's capital Xining, where a resident surnamed Han told Xinhua that the shaking had woken him up.
"The table and the closets were all shaking violently, so I just got dressed and run outside," he said.
Menyuan chief Huang Jicheng said that although dozens of houses were damaged, the epicenter of the earthquake was located 33 kilometers (20 miles) away from the county seat in an unpopulated area.
More than 700 tents have been sent to the impacted area by local civil affairs authorities.
The China Earthquake Networks Center announced that the strong earthquake was followed by a magnitude-3.4 aftershock, warning of the chance of more aftershocks over coming days, with none expected to be as powerful as the initial tremor.
In Aug. 2014, at least 617 people died when a magnitude-6.5 quake struck southwestern Yunnan province.
Another southwestern province, Sichuan, suffered a massive magnitude-8.0 earthquake in May 2008 that left more than 80,000 dead or missing.