China earthquake: Strong 6.9-magnitude tremor jolts western Qinghai province

Emergency personnel dispatched to remote area after quake forces people to rush outside homes

<p>Poster showing China’s President Xi Jinping is seen next to a freeway outside of Tongren, Qinghai province on March 2, 2018</p>

Poster showing China’s President Xi Jinping is seen next to a freeway outside of Tongren, Qinghai province on March 2, 2018

A strong earthquake measuring about 6.9 on the Richter scale jolted a remote county in northwest China’s Qinghai province early on Saturday, forcing the suspension of high-speed rail services due to tunnel damage and a number of injuries, authorities say.

While no deaths have been reported so far, several people with minor injuries in the Menyuan Hui Autonomous County have been treated and discharged, according to local news reports.

The 6.9-magnitude quake struck the mountainous part of the province at 1.45 am, with an epicentre at 37.77 degrees north latitude and 101.26 degrees east longitude, according to the China Earthquake Networks Center (CENC).

The quake was felt at least 140km away to the southeast in the provincial capital of Xining, where some people rushed outside of their homes.

A video posted online by local news broadcaster CGTN showed tiles falling off buildings and livestock suddenly standing up and moving in their pens, as well as lamps and other furniture swaying during the tremor.

The province activated a Level II emergency response – the second-highest in China’s four-tier earthquake emergency response system – after the quake hit the county.

Train services on some parts of the Lanzhou-Xinjiang high-speed railway line were suspended after the quake left several tunnels on the line damaged, the state-run Xinhua News Agency reported.

Emergency response teams, including hundreds of firefighters from Qinghai and neighbouring Gansu province, have been sent to the epicentre and over 2,000 rescuers from neighbouring provinces are on standby.

The US Geological Survey said there was a 5.1 magnitude aftershock about 25 minutes after the quake, but added that there is a low likelihood of casualties.

“The number of people living near areas that could have produced landslides in this earthquake is low, but landslide damage or fatalities are still possible in highly susceptible areas,” it added.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in