(June 29, 2009) A small earthquake occured in the early hours of Tuesday in the same part of China that was devastated by a quake last year, a spokesman for the State Seismological Bureau in Beijing said.
“Yes, there’s been an earthquake in the Mianzhu city area at 2:03 a.m. (1803 GMT). We’re still ascertaining what the situation is,” said the spokesman for the Bureau.
The U.S. Geological Survey put the size of the quake at 5.1 on the Richter scale and said it happened at a depth of 35 km (22 miles). Xinhua news agency quoted the national seismological network as saying the magnitude was 5.6 and the depth was 20 km.
The State Seismological Bureau spokesman said it was not a very big quake, although local residents would have felt it. There was no immediate information about any damage or casualties.
Mianzhu lies north of Chengdu in Sichuan province, where an 8.0 magnitude quake on May 12 last year killed more than 80,000 people. Thousands more are still officially listed as missing.
It was China’s most devastating quake since a disaster in 1976 at Tangshan, close to Beijing, which killed up to 300,000.
In late May last year scores of people were injured when aftershocks measuring 5.4 and 5.7 magnitude hit Sichuan province, although no deaths were reported.
Reuters, June 29, 2009