72 killed, 600 injured in strong 7.0 quake in China
Beijing: At least 72 people were killed and over 600 injured when a powerful 7.0 magnitude earthquake struck in southwest China's Sichuan Province on Saturday, CCTV News reported, a news agency reported.
The quake hit Lushan county of Ya'an city in southwest China's Sichuan Province at 8:02 AM local time.
The epicenter of the earthquake was reported to be at a depth of 13 Kms and was monitored at 30.3 degrees north latitude and 103.0 degrees east longitude.
Pictures on the state-run CCTV showed extensive damage to buildings.
The quake was strongly felt by residents in Sichuan's capital city of Chengdu, which is about 140 Kms from Ya'an. Sichuan is located close to the Tibet.
A resident in Chengdu, who was on the 13th floor of a building when the quake occurred, said, he felt the building shaking for about 20 seconds and he saw tiles fall off nearby buildings, state-run Xinhua news agency reported.
People in Leshan city of the Province and neighbouring Chongqing Municipality also felt the earthquake. Chengdu closed down the airport due to damage, the TV report said.
The quake was also felt in provinces of Guizhou, Gansu, Shaanxi and Yunnan.
Multiple aftershocks also jolted the area after the 7.0 magnitude quake took place, the largest aftershock in magnitude being the 5.1 magnitude one which shook the bordering area of Lushan and Baoxing counties of Sichuan at 8:07 AM.
Several aftershocks rated above 4.0 magnitude hit the area. This is the second earthquake to hit the area in five years.
In 2008, a quake in the same province killed over 90,000 people, since then the province was virtually rebuilt from the brink.