At least 89 dead as China's Gansu region is hit by powerful earthquakes
The quake hit near the city of Dingxi in Gansu province
A strong earthquake has struck western China, killing at least 89 people and injuring 628.
The quake near the city of Dingxi in Gansu province had a magnitude of 5.9 and was shallow, with a depth of just 6 miles, according to the US Geological Survey.
The local government's earthquake monitoring centre said the quake struck at 7.45am local time.
The region of mountains, desert and pastureland has a population of 26 million. It is one of China's more lightly populated provinces, although the Dingxi area has a greater concentration of farms and towns with a total population of about 2.7 million.
The casualties were reported in Min County in the rural southern part of Dingxi district, Dingxi Mayor Tang Xiaoming told state broadcaster CCTV.
Mr Tang said damage was worst in the counties of Zhang and Min, where scores of homes were hit and telephone and electricity services knocked out.
Residents described shaking windows and swinging lights but little major damage and little panic. Shaking was felt in the provincial capital of Lanzhou 110 miles north, and as far away as Xi'an, 250 miles to the east.
"You could see the chandeliers wobble and the windows vibrating and making noise, but there aren't any cracks in the walls. Shop assistants all poured out on to the streets when the shaking began," said a front desk clerk at the Wuyang Hotel in the Zhang County seat about 25 miles from the epicentre.
Dingxi is about 766 miles west of Beijing.
China's worst earthquake in recent years was a 7.9-magnitude temblor that struck the south-western province of Sichuan in 2008, leaving 90,000 people dead or missing.
- 1 National Orgasm Day: Six reasons (plus one bogus one) why they're good for us
- 2 The 'world's most beautiful vagina' has been debunked by science
- 3 Whoopi Goldberg tells Cara Delevingne to suck it up: 'She's not famous. I'M famous'
- 4 John Green schools morning show hosts after awkward interview with Cara Delevingne
- 5 Doctor Who: Christopher Eccleston says why he left the BBC series after just one series
What turns someone into a conspiracy theorist? Study to look at why some are more 'receptive' to such theories
Whoopi Goldberg tells Cara Delevingne to suck it up: 'She's not famous. I'M famous'
John Green schools morning show hosts after awkward interview with Cara Delevingne
Supermodel Gisele Bundchen mocked for wearing a burka to avoid being seen visiting plastic surgeon in Paris
'Rowdy' Roddy Piper dies: Wrestling legend dies aged 61, according to reports
Yvette Cooper: Our choice is years of Tory rule under Jeremy Corbyn – or a return to a Labour government
Labour leadership contender Jeremy Corbyn says 'we can learn a great deal from Karl Marx'
Is Britain really full up? Are migrants taking our jobs? Leading academic answers the most common anti-immigration claims
Public anger after French sunbather beaten up by gang for wearing a bikini in Reims park
Labour leadership: New poll shows party is now even 'less electable' than under Ed Miliband
While we fixate on Calais, the Home Office is quietly deporting dozens of migrants on 'ghost flights'
£14000 - £17000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The fastest growing travel comp...
£15500 - £17680 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A position has become available...
£60000 - £120000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This conference call startup i...
£25000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This digital and print design a...